Mother’s Day is supposed to be a day to celebrate our mothers. It’s a day to serve mom breakfast in bed, give her flowers, make her a beautiful card, and make her feel special. It’s a day to rejoice in the woman who raised you and made you who you are today. But what if your relationship isn’t all flowers and nice thoughts? How do you celebrate the day?
There were many years in my relationship with my mom when I struggled with just buying a card for Mother’s Day. Our relationship was difficult to say the least and it seemed like all the cards talked about having the “best mother in the world,” a mother who is “my best friend,” etc. I needed a card that said, “I guess you’ve probably been doing the best you can, but it’s not enough for me!” or “Do you actually try to be so aggravating?” or “Why can’t you just be more like Carol Brady?” Uggghhhh!
My relationship with my mother is now much better than it’s probably ever been and, yet, I still wouldn’t buy a card talking about her being the absolute best mother or my best friend. We have too much history together for that. How many people actually buy those cards, or are other people just less discriminating in the card selection and purchase process than I am?
I do buy cards now that say I love my mom and that I appreciate all she has done for me. That’s all true. So it’s a little less difficult now. I can actually mean the things the card says. But I had to come up with other solutions to my card buying conundrum in the past.
I’ve certainly spent many hours scouring the card aisles in every Hallmark store, CVS, etc., trying to come up with a card with a more generic “Happy Mother’s Day” message, but I’ve found other solutions over the years as well. Occasionally I would buy one of those blank cards that has a pretty (and sometimes meaningful) photo or illustration on the outside. Then I was able write my own message. I often wrote poems inside. In fact, I became famous in my family for writing “poem cards.” And then if I was in the right frame of mind and feeling nostalgic, I could even come up with something that my mom taught me or did for me that I truly appreciated and write about that. When all else failed, I would just write “Happy Mother’s Day, Mom. Enjoy your special day” and leave it at that. Always an option.
Making your own card can be a good alternative too. I haven’t really done that since I was a kid, but I have two friends who are very creative and have become quite talented at making some beautiful cards by hand (although with today’s technology you can even do it on the computer). I’ve always told them that they should do it professionally. Their cards are as nice as any I’ve seen in the specialty card shops. Making your own card, again, gives you the freedom to write your own personal or generic message, but also shows your mom that you did something more personal than just buy a card at the store for a few bucks. That might even get you some extra brownies points with her (or not…she might wonder why you couldn’t spend the money to buy her a card! Sometimes there’s just no winning).
So, this Mother’s Day, which will it be for you? I just bought my card the other day and was able to find one (at CVS this year) with just the right message. I hope you do too!