Origins of Mother’s Day
By: Lindsey McCallum
Did you know? Mother’s Day was officially founded in 1908 by Anna Jarvis in honor of her mother, Ann, who had been a bereaved parent of 12 children, only 4 of whom grew to adulthood. She intended the day to be an intimate celebration within families to acknowledge the contributions and sacrifices mothers like hers make for their children. Interestingly enough, Anna Jarvis never had any children of her own, yet she advocated for nearly 40 years to protect the heart of Mother’s Day against the commercialization that began to run rampant. Rather than profit from the holiday, she chose to spend the rest of her life and entire inheritance rallying against those who sought to profit from the day she held so dear.
We love the spirit of Mother’s Day and its true roots. Let us all honor the origins of the day by practicing gratitude for the gift of life given to us by our mothers.
Our sister non-profit, Return to Zero reminds us:
When Mother’s Day Brings Sadness
We know that while some of you will be celebrating this Sunday, some may feel extra heavy this week. We stand with you in support and encourage you to take a moment to connect with women who are experiencing infertility, loss of little ones, or even their own mothers who have passed. Mother’s day is for all of us.
How to Support Someone Who’s Grieving
If you are a friend or family member of someone for whom Mother’s Day might be hard, let them know you are thinking of them. Practice thoughtfulness. There isn’t a “right” thing to do - but doing anything thoughtful will make a world of difference.
If she says she doesn’t want to participate in celebrations, accept her journey and give her space to heal in her own way. Let her become in-touch with her own emotions and to set boundaries to protect herself, this is a sign of healing.
A special Message from our Friends at RTZ for Those who are Struggling
We know Mother’s Day is probably a mixed bag of emotions for you. Give yourself permission to let go of any shoulds, thoughts, or feelings of obligation to celebrate this day with friends and family. Acknowledge what your heart needs in order to thrive today—pay attention to what you want, and do that. Even if others may feel hurt or disappointed. Learning to love and listen to your inner voice will be a huge step toward health in your healing journey.
Most importantly, be kind to yourself and practice self-care. Some ideas…Go to your favorite coffee shop, attend a yoga class, take a bath, visit the water, read, or get a massage. You can find some additional ideas that have worked for others on the Return to Zero website.
We want you to know that you are not alone on this Mother's Day. Our wish is that you create a day that is right for you. Honor yourself, without judgement or guilt. Surround yourself with love and self-compassion.