By Jody, SAFIRE Participant
So it is coming closer to that time of the year, when we celebrate Mother’s Day! Thinking of Mother’s Day brings back memories of my encounter of the dreaded, yet fun, scavenger hunt for Mother’s Day gifts that occurred last year…
It was a day before Mother’s Day, and I planned a way to get something materialist for my mom. Although she said she didn’t want anything, I felt it was my “duty” to not only give something to my mom but to make her feel happy and appreciated.
Long story short of my adventure of “Mother’s Day Scavenger Hunt”: I walked up and down Piedmont Avenue in Oakland, CA for about or an estimated two hours. Eventually, I found three gifts that my mom really appreciated after I gave them to her, which were yellow flowers, a card, and a handmade brown clay elephant.
After looking back on this memory, I have been thinking of ways to “top” my creativity from last year’s gifts because Mother’s Day is coming closer than I expected. So today, May 4, 2011, I decided to simply ask my mom what she wanted for Mother’s Day and I am honestly left confused, yet enlightened.
I realized that my mom is worth way more than any creative gift(s) I can come up with. Reflecting about all the difficulties she experienced as an immigrant from the Philippines and sacrifices she made for our family and MORE, she is completely indescribable and remarkable. For example, she was unable to say her good-byes to her mother who passed away in the Philippines a couple years ago, because she felt like it was her “duty” to take care of her family here, stand by us, and support us. I found it shocking and tear jerking because her decision to stay here and not return back to our homelands to be with her mother for “the last time” was one of the strongest actions to do in anyone’s life. In addition, my sisters and she haven’t gone back to visit the Philippines since they have immigrated to the United States, which brings homesick feelings. We hope to go back to our true home in the near future. My mom’s journey through life in the Philippines, immigrating to the United States, and raising a family of three “lovely and sweet like honey” daughters basically on her own, has been a challenging and rewarding process. In simple terms, my mom is an independent women, strong mother, and empowering role model in my life.
In closing, to celebrate and appreciate ALL “mothers,” including independent mothers, strong mothers, empowering women, immigrant mothers, and young mothers, Mother’s Day should be EVERYDAY! We should celebrate and appreciate ALL “mothers” for their diverse and powerful journeys through their hardships. We should celebrate and appreciate ALL “mothers” not only through gifts but through unconditional love and respect.