Every year, we fret over the perfect Mother’s Day gift and every year, we’re reminded it’s something that can’t be bought. No gift can ever properly say “thank you” for the countless hours of carpooling, shopping, guiding, consoling, coaching, and folding the dreaded fitted sheet. No gift can match the value of an embrace after a profound hurt, or a lifetime of loving wisdom imprinted on our very being—from the way we see the world to how safe we feel inside it.
So, how do we express what we truly feel?
Don’t get me wrong, gifts are wonderful (and surely welcomed). But I believe what moms want more than anything right now is a loving hug. The unbridled, ungovernable, unstoppable kind of squeeze where everything else just melts away. And it breaks my heart that so many mothers can’t get one this year.
From grandparents isolated from their families, to moms kept two metres from their grown children, to those of us whose mothers have left this world, Sunday won’t be easy for most Albertans. But I do believe it’ll be more meaningful as we all reflect on the importance of physical connection in our lives. We know what it means to have loving arms wrapped around us, and how sharp the sting of their absence.
So, this Mother’s Day, I encourage you to celebrate the women in your life in whatever way you can. Whether it’s a warm catch-up from porch to sidewalk, a virtual chat from living room to living room, or a loving vigil marked by memories, let Sunday be about family. Because family can get us through anything. And when you can’t share a hug (or even when you can!), thoughtful gestures are always well received.
I know this message hasn’t been like my others, but these are unusual times. I simply wanted to pause to recognize all the amazing mothers in Alberta: women working hard to deliver essential services; women staying home to help flatten the curve; and women who volunteer in their community (you’ll absolutely love this story of a Camrose billet mom).
To those we call grandmother, stepmother, mother-in-law and mother, thank you.
Written By: Don Smitten
President and CEO, Alberta Motor Association