Mothering Sunday

Mothering Sunday

Mother’s Day is a day that we honour and recognise the invaluable contribution to our lives that our mothers have made.

It is celebrated in many countries all over the world on different dates. E.g in  8th March is International Mother’s Day;  Australia, New Zealand, much of Europe and US, it’s always the second Sunday in May; in France it’s the last Sunday in May. High demand on these dates causes flowers prices to be relatively high after UK Mother’s Day, which we have always called Mothering Sunday.

Mothering Sunday, which many call Mother’s Day, particularly since the world is so much smaller with the internet, is a British tradition stems back to the Middle Ages. Quite commonly, children as young as those in their early teens, would leave home to find work such as labourers and house servants. It allowed people that had moved out of their childhood home to go back to visit and attend church with their family all on the same day. Families may only all be together on this one day of the year making it very special, as, depending on their job, they may have had to work at Christmas and through the winter.

The Christian festival of Lent, which precedes Easter varies each year. Mothering Sunday always falls on the fourth Sunday of Lent, hence the date of why Mothering Sunday changes each year, but it usually falls in March.

We have always acknowledged that this celebration of our mum can remind us of her absence in a painful way. This is magnified in our modern world in which there are constant reminders wherever you go, from our social media to the supermarket. Emotional triggers can be set off anywhere for those who have lost a mother or a child however long ago that was.

In our modern world, the relationship with our Mum may be a complicated or difficult full of happy and sad memories. It is tough for those whose mothers are sick have age related memory loss. It will be a sensitive time for others who have a strained relationship with their Mum whether that is because of a rift in the family or whose mum was not maternal can also struggle with their painful emotions.

Mothering Sunday can bring out a plethora of emotions, grief, hurt, anger, disappointment, regret, resentment, loneliness, inadequacy; and for others joy, peace, and fulfilment.

There are things that you can do to help you through this difficult time. Plan and decide what you want to do for yourself. I always find being out in nature helps enormously. You can ask for support from friends and family, it’s amazing how many people are in the same boat that you are unaware of as they don’t talk about it! You could create your own ritual for the day, this may include helping others in some voluntary capacity.

You simply may love your extended family, but just don’t want to spend it with everyone all the time as you have only just got over the trauma of last Christmas! That is OK!!

Mothering Sunday is the perfect chance for a husband or partner to tell his wife what a wonderful Mum she is and to shower her with gifts, cards, and flowers to show his recognition, thanks and appreciation for the good job that she is doing/ has done tirelessly 24/7 to raise his children.

Dad should also teach his children how to show their gratitude to make her heart full. Breakfast in bed, tidying it all away, washing up and tidying after are all things that Dad can help with.

Mothering Sunday is just one day, and you may need to stretch it to accommodate all the mums in your family structure. Every family is different.

At Make Their Day, we have learned how families negotiate this potentially tricky time, and it all starts about a week before. Many people may have to fit in a visit to a graveyard, and they get that out of the way first, to honour Grandmothers or a parent/parent-in-law. At Make Their Day, we recommend that you take plants like a single miniature Rose or a container of bulbs. We have plenty to choose from! Nature will water them, and they will last longer than flowers and cheer you up when you next visit!

Then you have a few choices to make for the weekend itself… It may be a special day for you and your children, but you also have to consider two sets of your grandparents, and possibly stepmothers and step grandmothers and their emotional feelings if they have lost their mums or need to see your siblings families. It can all get too much! The best way to negotiate this is to plan and decide how you will include everyone in a way that is not too exhausting for you and doesn’t offend them!! This year you may have everyone all together or see different people during the week or over three weekends, It’s OK to set your boundaries!

You can only be responsible for yourself. If you are happy, at least one person is! Happy wife, happy life is true!

Whatever you decide, I hope that you have a wonderful day and wish you a Happy Mothering Sunday!