On Mother’s Day, thank you – by Louise Correcha

This mother’s day, I’m searching for a way to articulate what motherhood means to me, to somehow honour my fellow mothers.

My first thought is that if love is indeed the force turning this world, mothers are perhaps its source – the mountains from which rivers carve gorges and valleys where life multiplies. But I struggle to articulate it further.

And so, I turn to Google. I read about the origins of modern mother’s day celebrations, uncovering some dark stories in the process. I read about Corretta Scott King leading the 1968 Mother’s Day March for Welfare Rights in Washington, a month after her husband’s assassination. I reflect, as a feminist, on how Corretta was also a civil rights leader, but that because of the world we inhabit, she’s mainly known as the widow of one. I then think about how fortunate I am to mother where I do and when I do.

But I know I’m searching a universe of meaning to try to put into words what is, essentially, everything. After all, if mothers didn’t exist, nothing else – or at least, no-one else – would.

I remember the words of one of the beautiful mothers who contributed to our book Working Mums. As Mel so wisely puts it in her story, when she reflects on how she found herself again after becoming a mother:

“Slowly. With time and acceptance. With counsel and help, both professionally and from dear friends. And with love, strong unequivocal heart-holding love. It was hard. And it was easy. It was life taking its inevitable course… It was sleep deprivation and despair and yelling that came from somewhere deep and primal.”

In particular, her words about depth, primordiality and life taking its course resonate deeply with me. And they remind me again of a river. That river that rises from my belly and erupts into giggling fits shared with my daughter. That swells into waves of love when she stumbles into the morning, squinty-eyed and scruffy-haired.

So mums, this mother’s day (and every other day), I want to say thank you. It doesn’t come close to what I think you deserve for the life you bring to this world, but hopefully it’s a start.

One tiny ripple in a deep, fierce, beautiful river.

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