Mother’s day was yesterday and for me it was so beautiful to see so many women honored if only for one day. That vibration of love spreading and rippling throughout our planet felt so expansive. I love to sit and honor my ancestors, the women who came before me and with each generation allowed themselves to evolve to learn more about who a woman is and is not.
I googled the history of Mother’s day and discovered that the first official one in the US was the result of the efforts of Anna Jaris following her own mother’s death in 1905. “In one of those mad boundless leaps taken only by the most creative holiday entrepreneurs, Anna Jarvis went national,” wrote American Enterprise magazine, the publication of the American Enterprise Institute. “She decided that henceforth, on the anniversary of her mother’s death, all Americans ought to honor the women who gave them birth.”
On the first Mothers day, Anna asked that people wear one single white carnation which much to her chagrin opened up the way of the flower industry feeding us to buy ‘Mom” flowers for mother’s day, Within a few years, other businesses were cashing in on the holiday.
Anna eventually became very distraught over the fact that she couldn't seem to stop any of the commercialization of this day that was to support and to honor the women who had given birth and a day for Moms to rest.
While reading, I wondered what she would think of this holiday today which has now been extended to pet Moms, single Dad’s, women who do not have children, yet we don’t want them to feel left out or hurt their feelings?
Following the success of her first Mother’s Day, Anna who remained unmarried and childless her whole life, resolved to see her holiday added to the national calendar. She argued that American holidays were biased toward male achievements, she started a massive letter writing campaign to newspapers and prominent politicians urging the adoption of a special day honoring motherhood. By 1912 many states, towns and churches had adopted Mother’s Day as an annual holiday, and Jarvis had established the Mother’s Day International Association to help promote her cause. Her persistence paid off in 1914 when President Woodrow Wilson signed a measure officially establishing the second Sunday in May as Mother’s Day.
I would love to have met Anna, a women whose intention was to honor mothers not to sell flowers but simply to say, “thank you.”