Mama's Day Our Way

Tuesday, May 01, 2012

One of the images that will be available as an e-card.
By Lisa Russ

Mother's Day has a way of making everyone feel like an outsider. This brunch-y, kid friendly version of Mother's Day, creates the feeling that there is some elusive "right way" to celebrate and be celebrated.  And most people's tales of the day include disappointment and dismay over something (or everything) gone awry.

For Strong Families Mama's Day celebration, we knew we wanted to flip that.  Rather than create more idealized shoulds, we  wanted to put out words and images that capture mamahood as we know it, in all of it's complexity.

We know that mamas defy categories.  We are all engaged in families and communities in motion--from immigration status to sexuality and gender, from health and ability to disability and transformation.  Day to day, the most constant thing is a commitment to figuring it out.

We wanted a way to recognize the day that would bring us back to it's roots. Originally a cry against the Civil War, Mother's Day was meant to be a radical revisioning of what is possible when you put mothers at the center of things.

To that end, we worked with an incredible group of artists to create a series of e-cards that will be released on May 8th.  Taken together, the set of cards creates an image of mamahood that will not be available at the CVS nearest you.  Each card lovingly depicts an aspect of mamahood and family that will likely feel very familiar to most of us...immigration, tenderness, separation, disability, love, and queerness.

From now through Mother's Day, our blog will feature posts by mamas on an amazing range of topics, from nursing and working, to being pregnant while gender queer, to race, immigration and mamahood.

We invite you to sit back, stay tuned, and watch the blog roll with some amazing content sure to delight and inspire.  Follow us on twitter and Facebook to make sure you don't miss a word.

Lisa Russ is the Communications Strategist for Strong Families and a Senior Fellow at Movement Strategy Center.  She lives, works and plays in Oakland with her family.

This blog is part of Strong Families Mama’s Day Our Way blog series.  Make and send a custom Mama’s Day e-card at  Strong Families is a national initiative led by Forward Together. Our goal is to change the way people think, act and talk about families.