Mother’s Day.

Mother’s Day can be hard for many people. For people whose mothers have passed on, for mothers who have lost children, for people who are estranged from their mothers. For women who have tried unsuccessfully to have children for years. The day can be a painful reminder of what you don’t have rather than what you do.

Every year my friend, Jules, sends her mother flowers on Mother’s Day. And waits for a call from her Mum whom she hasn’t spoken to for 12 years. Last year she waited and waited, and like every year, heard nothing. She drove past her mother’s house and saw the beautiful bouquet she had spent over a hundred dollars on unceremoniously dumped in her mother’s bin.

Jules and her mother are estranged because her mother, a wealthy socialite, doesn’t approve of Jules’ choice of partner. Ben is an artist and musician. A soul of the earth. One of the most giving, caring, nicest men I have ever met. He loves Jules and their two kids but he has no money and in Jules’ mother’s eyes that is a mortal sin. She had a man picked out for Jules who had a top corporate job, went to all the best schools, came from the best family, and had all the right connections, but Jules didn’t fall for him the way she fell for Ben.

Obviously, the backstory is a little more convoluted than I am able to tell here; there were infractions such as Jules and Ben being busted years ago for growing pot, but the gist of the matter is that Jules’ mother has rejected her only daughter because her partner is unsuitable in a socioeconomic sense.

Jules finds Mother’s Day difficult. She has chosen a life that suits her, that allows her to be the person she wants to be. She feels her mother has rejected her for being herself. So on this day, I say, give a hug to those people you know who for one reason or another find Mother’s Day difficult and give thanks if there is a positive motherly influence in your own life, whether it be your own mother or not.

And now I’m off to fire up the barbecue because I don’t actually feel I ate enough yesterday (yeah, right) and it’s time for a nice, juicy steak. And I have people here who are mothers, who have lost their mothers, have children who live overseas whom they never get to see, and who are estranged from their mothers, who need to be fed. And we’re going to enjoy the day together and forget for a bit how complicated family life can be, because for the moment, we all have each other, and I do believe that family is where you find it. Have a good day.

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25 thoughts on “Mother’s Day.

  1. What a sad story – the mother sounds so shallow. I wonder if anyone has ever been brave enough to point it out to her? You’d think she would mellow when she saw that the relationship was a success – 12 years, after all…it’s a pretty good sign that Jules picked a good guy.

    I hate days like Mother’s Day. Surely as many people are upset and ostracised by days like that as are happy?

    Mind you, I enjoy being on the receiving end as much as anyone (choccies and flowers) so maybe I should just shut up and stop grumbling! 🙂

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  2. Family is indeed where you find it.

    I can’t spend the day with my own mom – thankfully just because of distance – so I’m spending it with a friend of mine and her daughters… who have reasons to cling to this mother’s day.

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  3. Happy Mother’s Day to you. I think we’re doing steak tonight too.

    The Man and I haven’t spoken to his mother in many many years. She is possibly one of the most selfish women I have ever met. (Many many long sordid stories.) To the point where we won’t have her near the kids. The Boy wouldn’t recognize her. It’s taken the Man a long time to get over this. But I know he takes stock of all those around him who love him and care deeply about him. So today we celebrate family. In all it’s incarnations.

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  4. My heart goes out to your friend, Selma. A woman who would shun her own child, and grandchildren, over social status and public appearance is no mother. Those of us blessed with an abundance of maternal instinct and love are thinking her and her kids many, many hugs and gratitude she’s found family with you and other friends.

    And Happy Mom’s Day to you and your circle of family as well.

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  5. Happy Mothers Day Selma!

    I can related to Jules dilemma. When my mother died in 2003, I had been estranged from my entire family — whom I found toxic — for years. In fact, no one told me of my mother’s death. I had to find it out from Obituaries.com. Can you imagine that?

    Mothers and Fathers Days have left a void for me. I have to just basically ignore them and just live as if they are just another day in the year.

    It’s obvious our parents’ generation had a different concept of relationships with their adult children then ours does.

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  6. Happy Mother’s Day, Selma m’dear. This post brought a tear to my eye, but I must admit I’m happy for Jules because, while she may not have a relationship with her mother, she has Ben, her children, and you. She’s a lucky woman.

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  7. Mother’s day is still difficult to me…the 4th one without her this year. 😦 Thankfully, I was stuck at work for 12 hours today so I had a bit of a delay from the tears coming out later on this evening. Blah.

    This year, I did things differently than any other. I bought cards for female friends who have a very motherly influence on me (in a good way, of course) and I wrote a nice letter to my boyfriend telling him how very lucky I am for having him in my life. I also called his mom to say Happy Mother’s Day. 🙂 Doing all of these things actually made me feel really good today.

    You are very right about something in your post–despite everything, remember who you do have. 🙂

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  8. Hi Selma…
    I think you are a positive role model. How fortunate your friend you mentioned has you in her life…too bad her Mom can’t see that this fellow obviously loves her daughter and the children(together many years, yes?). I suppose I would be leery of marijuana being grown there, given they have kids who might want to experiement, and marijuana IS a drug, after all. But I cannot IMAGINE shunning her own daughter–and grandchildren–no matter what the reason–for years!
    Great spirit–family IS where you find it!

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  9. A sad story. As a parent, my kids have not always chosen the path I thought was right for them, but what has that got to do with anything. They live their own lives, not mine.
    Whatever they do in life, I’m with them. Full stop! End of Story!

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  10. As you probably know, Mother’s Day (properly. Mothering Sunday) takes place earlier in England, although there’s great pressure, mainly from the florists and chocolatiers, for us to celebrate BOTH.

    As it is, we’re supposed to shower Mother with chocolates, etc. on OUR Mother’s Day … even though it always falls in Lent!

    When we were small, we always went to church with Mother on Mothering Sunday (because you had also to pay your respects to your ‘mother church’) and on the way, we’d pick wild flowers. The Vicar would bless them, and give us a little card to give to Mother with the flowers.

    And, she always said she appreciated them more than any store-bought bouquet.

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  11. Great post as always Selma. What a loving thoughtful friend you are and how lucky Jules is to have you.

    As for Jules’ mother, it’s an insult to mother’s everywhere to even associate the word mother with her. What kind of values does she have that she would shun her own daughter and grandchildren for such shallow reasons? Unfortunately for her she is the biggest loser here but my heart still goes out to Jules.

    I hope you had a wonderful day, you deserve it.

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  12. PAISLEY – and to you too, my dear friend. Hope you are well.

    PUDDOCK – I know. Ben is a great guy. it’s a shame some people are so judgemental when it comes to wealth. I agree with you about days like these – they are so hard on some people. But like you I can’t say no to flowers and chocolates. I mean, I am only human. Hahaha.

    BRITT – I’m sure you’re looking after your friend and hope that maybe next year you’ll get to spend the day with your Mom. That would be brilliant!

    NAT – I am so sorry to hear about the Man’s mother. Those situations are tough. The man is lucky to have you and your friends and the boy to help him cope. It can be so hard to sever contact but sometimes it’s the only way. Have a lovely day and enjoy your steak!

    SAGACIOUS – I still find it hard to believe that Jules’ Mum is so cold. I don’t get some people, I really don’t. I am so glad you are visiting. Thank you.

    GLENN – how awful to find out that way. I feel so badly for you. That breaks my heart.

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  13. KAREN – and I have her. She’s a good ‘un. Happy Mamas Day to you too. Hope those minions are spoiling you.

    DOCSGIRL – how hard this day must be for you. I really feel for you. You seem to have a lot of people in your life who really care for you, however. And the joy that brings can’t be denied. ((((Hugs))))

    LISA – the pot was a very minor infringement pre-children but it has never been forgotten. I pray that one day Jules and her Mum are reconciled because despite everything, it’s what Jules wants. Until then she can hang out with me and I’ll be her pretend Mum.

    ANTHONY – I can imagine you’d be a fantastic Dad. I’m sure your kids feel they can talk to you about anything. And you’re right, no matter what, we still love them!

    TRAVELRAT – what a lovely tradition. I love hearing about things like that. I don’t know how that emoticon got in. WordPress has seemed a little possessed lately. Mr. Winky has taken on a life of his own 😉

    GYPSY – I hope you were spoiled by your girls. You also deserve it. And you are absolutely right about Jules’ Mum – she’s the one who is missing out. I’m sure she knows it too but her pride won’t let her do anything about it. Such a shame.

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  14. My mom just passed on last May and Mother’s Day this year was very hard. I miss her so much but I am grateful for having so many good memories of our times together. She is with me in spirit, this I am sure of.

    So many people don’t have good relationships with their parents. Your friends story was so sad. Someday her mother may regret her own behaviour but maybe she won’t. She indeed is the one missing out.

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  15. GERALDINE – I’m sure your Mum is with you too. I feel for you at what must be a sad time for you. It’s brilliant that you have all those happy memories though. XX000XX

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  16. I hope you had a great day. Mine was wonderful because my mom and setpdad are visiting, and my mother-in-law lives close to us. So we had a wonderful home-cooked meal with my parents, my in-laws, the girls, my husband, and I.

    I find it annoying when people complain about their parents, or when parents turn their back on their children because of the path they chose in life. Even if we do not agree with their choices, we should never deprive our kids of our love.

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  17. How good it is that we can add to our families as we want. I spent time with a friend who is missing her two daughters – both living on the other side of Canada. Mother’s Day is not an easy day for many people.

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  18. MELEAH – your comment just appeared. WP is full of gremlins at the moment. Hope you had a great Mother’s Day too.

    INGRID – so nice to hear from you. I have been neglecting you – I do apologise. Hope you and the family are well. I agree, it’s wrong to deprive our kids of our love. So wrong. Glad you had a good Mother’s Day.

    KATE – it can be hard, can’t it? How nice that you spend time with your friend. I’m sure she appreciates it.

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  19. Thanks so much for visiting my ‘Memories of Mom’ at Small Reflections and leaving the link back to your blog. I’m assuming you found me through Cricket’s ‘Slice of Life’ because I see you participate in that … and Writer’s Island. I’m hoping to work up my confidence to do BOTH of those on a regular basis eventually.

    As I indicated in my response to your comment on my blog, you’re right. I found the piece about my mom (and the one about my brother written the day before) ‘challenging’ to write and share … but I’m glad I did publish them both.

    Hugs and blessings,

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  20. STORYTELLER – it was my pleasure to visit. I did find you via Cricket and her wonderful Slice of Life. I hope you continue to participate in that and in Writers Island because I am enjoying your work. Thanks so much for visiting.

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  21. I agree it is hard when your mom lives far away. My mom and I hardly talk, though I love her very much.

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  22. NECTARFIZZ – I didn’t have a very good relationship with my Mum for years. We hardly spoke. Now it is much better. Things can change so don’t give up.

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