This collage is for Mother’s Day. We all come into this world via the womb of our mothers. Whether we love them or hate them, they remain our mothers. The most well-known image of any Mother and Child is the one of Mary holding the baby Jesus. You don’t have to be Christian to have seen this one. The image of Mary and Jesus in this collage was done as part of a bigger mosaic for my son’s birthday. The pieces here are stained glass. I used pearls around Mary’s face and there is another piece of my jewelry by her neck. I don’t know why I undertook such a big project, other than to say, I did it out of love. The hands and feet of the little people in the other images are friends of mine. We all want to make sure that our babies have five fingers and five toes when they are born.
Setting aside a special day to celebrate mothers is a good idea. I’m all for this. At this stage of my life though, it is occuring to me that as mothers, we are still ordinary human beings. We made mistakes and are making mistakes throughout our lives. Just as our children are having their own growing experiences, we are having ours too. While we ourselves were learning and growing, we may or may not have been the role models our children needed. Right up to the moment of death, we are going through our own processes. It’s good for children to respect and appreciate their mothers for who they are and not for who they would like them to be. We care for our children in one way while they are small and when they grow up, we have different concerns for them.
The image of the “Madonna and Child” is a beautiful one and Mary was “My Lady.” That is what Madonna means in Italian. On this Mother’s Day, ordinary mothers don’t want any idol worship.
We have all changed diapers, washed little hands and feet, sang lullabies, and done all the myriad kinds of jobs that only mothers can do. Young mothers are still doing these things and older mothers are doing other things. In “The gift of an Ordinary Day: A Mother’s Memoirs,” motherhood is described aptly:
Those incredibly full to bursting days of young parents and young children, the days that some days you thought would never end eventually do. And then you are sad.
“It is of course, a universal drama- children grow up, they leave home, clocks tick in empty bedroom, and untouched gallons of milk turn sour in the fridge because no one’s there to drink them…”
You miss the person you had been, the very busy mom full of schedules, carpools, school events and suddenly one day your children are grown and you are done. “I missed the person I had been for them too, the younger, more capable mother who read aloud for hours, stuck raisin eyes into bear-shaped pancakes, created knight’s amour from cardboard and duct tape. Certainly my talents didn’t seem quite so impressive anymore, my company not as desirable as it once had been.
Babies are born, they grow up, and mothers grow old. Life treats us all differently. Some mothers are still in the family home and others are in senior apartments or nursing homes. Some are healthy and some are sick. Some see their children and some don’t. They are still mothers though.
I’m happy though to say and to see that many mothers in this day and age carve out “late blooms” for themselves. They get over the stage where they feel that the empty nest has left them empty – and they get on with new lives and new growth whatever their age. This makes their children happy. Hope you like the “Mother and Child” collage. Happy Mother’s Day!
The Gift of an Ordinary day: A Mother’s Memoir (Amazon Review)