I've seen many many many posts about Mother's Day. Not surprising considering I mostly frequent the blogs of Catholic women who practice NFP.
I've seen the range of posts from Mother's Day is the best holiday ever to Mother's Day should be cancelled and everything in between and tangents off to the side. I even started to write my own post reflecting on Mother's Day, but it turned into more of a rant.
SO, I thought I'd do something different and share about Mother's Day and it's origins. You see, back in 4th grade when we were studying West Virginia History, we studied famous West Virginians and at our open house, we each had to prepare an index card of details about our famous West Virginian to share with parents. We also dressed up as the person assigned to us.
I was assigned Anna Jarvis, from Grafton, WV: Founder of, you guessed it, Mother's Day.
Oh, the irony.
Anyway, so here are the details:
In 1907, to honor her mother who had died two years prior, Anna Jarvis, held a memorial service and began a campaign to have "Mother's Day" recognized as a national holiday. She succeeded in 1914 and since that time the second Sunday of May each year is reserved as a day to honor mothers. Carnations have been used to honor mothers from that very first celebration in 1907 because it was Anna Jarvis' mother's favorite flower. It is customary that a woman wear a white carnation to honor a deceased mother or a pink carnation to honor a living mother. Despite this custom to wear a carnation, Anna Jarvis herself fought agains the sale of flowers and candy for Mother's Day. She did not want it to be taken up by commercialism. The International Shrine for Mother's Day is located at Andrews Methodist Episcopal Church in Grafton, WV, a mere 25 minute drive from my front door.
While this obviously doesn't offer us advice for how to celebrate or get through Mother's Day (or wherever on the spectrum in between the two you are), it should at least set aside the notion that Mother's Day was invented by Hallmark (though Hallmark has sure done it's best to claim and destroy what Anna Jarvis started).
We will be hosting a "Mother's Day Tea" with my mom, MIL, and SILs to celebrate the "mothers in our family" as my invitation said. By hosting, it guarantees I will get up, shower, and put make-up on. I can't promise I'll make it to Mass, I didn't last year and this year is so much worse. But I will try. Oh, and there will be wine. Lots of wine. (Especially since I do believe AF will be arriving just in time for me to put the appetizers in the oven.)
But at least I will have set the record straight.