For as long as I can remember, my mother has always been my best friend. No matter what I was going through, she was there for the highs and lows. While I obviously love her for always supporting and encouraging me to chase my dreams, but more than that I love her for who she is.
My mom is funny, compassionate, ambitious and creative. She’s written two books, a lifelong dream of hers. I’m so proud she’s achieving the goals she pursued so long.
Mother’s Day to me means honoring not only her but all of the matriarchs in my family who’ve helped me become who I am today. From my grandma to my aunts, all of the women in my family have made outstanding strides in life and inspired me to do the same.
Not a day goes by that I’m not grateful for my mother and the other women in my family. To me, every day is Mother’s Day.
But that won’t stop me from wishing a Happy Mother’s Day to my mom and all of the other mothers in the Queen City.
When I think of Mother’s Day, I think of love. I remember all the times my mom showed her love for me from an early age to now as an adult.
She showed me as a man what love should look like. She showed me that love means sacrificing your own needs for the happiness and well-being of others.
She showed me that love means giving all you have even when all you have is barely enough for yourself. My mother showed me that love isn’t about money or gifts but about the effort you show someone you truly care about.
A mother’s love is the greatest gift because its unconditional. No matter how far you get out into the world, you will always yearn for your mother’s compassion and affection that no one else can truly match.
As a child, my parents’ friends always told my mother that I was a mini version of her. As I get older, I realize how much of a great honor it is to have been bestowed that title. Her unyielding work ethic, compassion, creativity, and resourcefulness are just a few of her many talents that I hope to perfect.
Today, my mother is a domestic worker to make sure that my family has its needs met. She does the grocery shopping, cooks dinner, cleans the laundry, dishes, vacuums, and dusts.
After that, she attends prayer meetings, book club meetings, and meditates. Just to think about everything she accomplishes in twenty-four hours nearly exhausts me.
It’s impossible for any of us to put the ways our maternal figures shaped us into words. Motherhood transcends humanity – it is a part of all life itself. Through history, the social reproductive labor that is placed upon women in the household goes largely unappreciated, uncompensated, and unreciprocated.
This year’s Mother’s Day comes at a critical point in history. Earlier this week, Chief Justice Samuel Alito’s draft opinion was leaked, revealing an attempt to overturn the landmark 1973 Roe v. Wade ruling which gave pregnant people the right to an abortion if they choose.
Though I’ve made the decision that motherhood is not a role I want to take on, I know the overturning of Roe v. Wade will have drastic implications not only for mothers, but for every single one of us.
My mama and I have shared many stories and laughs over the years. We’re both the youngest so we’re silly by nature. She understands my sense of humor perfectly, she gave it to me after all. She also gave me her calm, her peace, her need to not be seen or heard, but always felt.
One of my most vivid memories with her doesn’t involve me at all. Well, not directly.
Years ago, we were talking like usual and she recalled a recent memory of her own. She reflected on a day standing in the kitchen soaping up some dirty dishes when she raised her head just long enough to look out the window, and saw her mother outside walking around.
Her mother, my grandmother, Ruth Pruth Harmon, had already passed away many years ago but there she was defying all types of logic and practicality.
Her story reinforced to me that the eternal tether between a mother and her children is a bond stronger than Cam Newton’s locs. Mama will like that analogy, Cam is her all-time favorite Panther.
My mama is a sober God-fearing woman, she probably hasn’t seen drugs since M.A.S.H. was on, but the supernaturally inexplicable visited her the same as someone on half way through an ayahuasca trip.
I’ve never tried to figure out why she saw her when she did. Maybe God allowed my grandmother’s spirit to visit Charlotte just long enough to let mama know she wasn’t alone, that everything was going to be alright. That’s all we really want from our mother’s after all.
Whatever the reason, the closest thing I know to unconditional love is what mama saw out that kitchen window.
Grandma passed away when I was too young to remember her for myself, but I imagine she loved my mother, three aunts and one uncle the same way her youngest daughter does her two boys.
This Sunday, my only hope is for my mama to see her mama one more time.
Happy Mother’s Day.