People in many ancient cultures celebrated holidays honoring motherhood, personified as a goddess. Here are just a few of those:
* ancient Greeks celebrated a holiday in honor of Rhea, the mother of the gods
* ancient Romans celebrated a holiday in honor of Cybele, a mother goddess, March 22-25 - the celebrations were notorious enough that followers of Cybele were banished from Rome
* in the British Isles and Celtic Europe, the goddess Brigid, and later her successor St. Brigid, were honored with a spring Mother's Day, connected with the first milk of the ewes
Mother's Day: What You Need to Know
In addition to the popular Mother's Day holiday in the United States, many cultures celebrate a Mother's Day:
* Mother's Day in Britain -- or Mothering Sunday -- is the fourth Sunday in Lent....
* the second Sunday in May is Mother's Day not only in the United States, but also in other countries including Denmark, Finland, Italy, Turkey, Australia and Belgium. By the end of Anna Jarvis' life, Mother's Day was celebrated in more than 40 countries.
* in Spain, Mother's Day is December 8, on the Feast of the Immaculate Conception, so that not only mothers in one's family are honored, but also Mary, mother of Jesus.
* in France, Mother's Day is on the last Sunday of May. A special cake resembling a bouquet of flowers is presented to mothers at a family dinner.
* the Women's International League for Peace and Freedom, the Women's Action for Nuclear Disarmament, the League of Women Voters and other organizations still organize protests on Mother's Day: The Million Mom March, protests at nuclear weapons sites, etc.
Mother's Day Celebrations for Single Moms
As a single mom on Mother's Day, you might feel self-conscious about making a big deal over this particular holiday. After all, celebrating Mother's Day may very well mean that you will have to be the one to orchestrate the celebration, right? Well, here are some tips to keep in mind:
1. You Deserve a Mother's Day Celebration
This day is for you, and you deserve to be honored as your children's mother. Hey, if that means you'll have to be the one to get the ball in motion, that's okay! Don't let the day go by unrecognized.
2. Tell Your Kids What You Want
Do yourself a favor and be upfront with your kids about how you'd like to spend the day. Don't expect them to realize on their own what might seem just perfect to you.
3. If You Have Young Children, Teach Them the Meaning of Mother's Day
A few weeks before Mother's Day, make a point of visiting the library and reading some children's books about Mother's Day. One of my favorites is the book Mother's Day by Anne Rockwell. The story takes place in Mrs. Madoff's class, and all of her students take turns explaining how they celebrate Mother's Day. Because each child's story is unique, the book reflects many different ideas and families.
4. Consider Making a Gift Together
Again, if you have young children, you might want to consider doing a craft together to honor the day. One thing I love to do is make collages to represent the things I most appreciate in life; and what better occasion is there to reflect on what you appreciate most than Mother's Day? This easy craft would be fun for the kids, and it would also be meaningful for you.
5. Honor Yourself
It's great to receive gifts and honor from your children, but it's also important to take some time at Mother's Day to sit and reflect on your own personal feelings about being a mother. What do you treasure about raising your children? What surprises you the most? What helps you cope with the challenges you face? Take the time to compliment yourself this Mother's Day and recognize the truly wonderful and loving gift that you are to your kids.