June 14, 2024

All along, I thought that Mother’s Day is celebrated on the third week of May every year. With this in mind, I was not expecting this year’s version until May 19. I was proven wrong because as per Presidential Proclamation 266, Mother’s Day shall be held on the second week of May of each and every year.
So, this year, it is on May 12.
Aside from that, when I opened the newspaper that was complimentarily delivered to my office last Saturday, the front page greeted in bold letters all the wonderful and lovely mothers in the world. I was confounded and confused. I was going to skip my article on mothers but my judgment got the better of me. Aside from my mama who died long ago, almost all women I know, including my wife and my sister, are mothers. Thus, though it be late, I have to do justice to them by greeting them “Happy Mother’s Day.”
Lucky are the people who love their mothers. They should savor every moment and spend as much time with them because much like everything that is priceless, mothers come only once in a lifetime.
Sure, mothers are sometimes boring and unpredictable because they were born at a bygone era when life was so much slower, simpler and easier. They are attuned to a culture and an environment that is comfortable to them. To us, they are corny and old-fashioned.
The choice of their perfumes and the ointments they apply on their aching joints reek with the smell of an odor that drives away the most ardent of admirers. Yet, we expect them to think like us, act like us, smell like us, and be like us. Should it not be the other way around?
When my mother was still alive and at the peak of her authority, I have had some disagreements with her. She was impulsive, controlling and at times, irritating. I felt that she dictated the terms and conditions of my existence. The way I dress, the way I talk, the places I go, the friends I meet, and even the girlfriend I was courting must be in accord with her taste and desire. It gets me angry that I have to be home at a particular time under pain of punishment.
Through it all, I never rebelled except for some minor tantrums here and there, a wanton disobedience of her commands, and an eerie silence that compelled her to peek inside my room to see if I was still alive and kicking.
For reconciliation, she’d ask me to pray with her to God the Father, Jesus Christ, and the Holy Spirit to watch over me so that I will always be a good boy as if I was the sinner and she was the saint.
The thing I liked most about my mother was that she knew how to bring out the best in me. She pampered me with books. I read until I was absorbed in its pages helping me forget about the differences that I had with her. She treated me with biscuits and soft-drinks, a luxury during those times, after every scolding. And, though she never said “I love you” or “I am sorry”, I felt it in my heart that those words were not needed. After all, love and forgiveness are felt, not said.
My mother mellowed down as she got older. Age, apparently, tamed her. She was no longer the feisty lady that I grew up with. It changed her physically and mentally. What did not change was the tender loving care she had for me and my siblings.
Up until her waning hours and her death due to colon cancer, she always had the best interest of her children in mind. She may not have been the model mother that I had in mind, but she was the best mother.
There is no love like the love of a mother, so they say. The love of a mother cuts the deepest and slashes like a sword that can penetrate the hardest of hearts. The clear manifestation of God’s existence is in mothers.
Sadly, I only realized this when my mother was at the throes of death. Not that I neglected my mother. I took care of her when she can no longer take care of herself. I gave her the best comfort that money within my capability can provide. I had her fulfill her “bucket list.” Still, whatever effort I did not make my mother happy was not enough. I could have done more but it was too late.
For those who have their mothers, lavish them with whatever you can afford. Respect them. Love them. Do not wait until they are no longer here. Hug them and make them feel as if your world depended on them. Do not greet them only on Mother’s Day, for, in the fast lane of life, every day is mother’s day.