At Pinnacle Life, we think a lot about who matters to us. Mothers, in whatever shape or form, matter. We all have one! Whether we have a great relationship, a tenuous relationship or no relationship, we have all been shaped in some way by the relationship we have or had with our mothers.
According to history.com the celebration of motherhood can be traced back to ancient Greeks and Romans, who held festivals in honour of the mother goddesses Rhea and Cybele. The early Christian festival ‘mothering Sunday’ was a significant tradition in Europe when the faithful were encouraged to return to their mother church.
Anna Jarvis came up with the American version of Mother’s Day in 1908, and it became an official U.S. holiday in 1914. Following her mother’s death in 1905, Anna came up with the idea of Mother’s Day to honour the sacrifices mothers made for their children. She would later denounce the holiday’s commercialisation and spent the latter part of her life trying to remove it from the calendar. Ironically, Anna Jarvis did not have children herself.
Motherhood in 2021 looks vastly different in many ways from motherhood in 1908. 1908 mothers did not need to worry about screen-time, and mothers in 2021 don’t need to spend a full day just doing the washing. Even in the last 10-20 years, there have been significant changes for women that have consequentially affected many mothers:
-Many women are their family’s primary breadwinner.
-Many women in the workforce have young children - 28.5% of all working women are mothers.
-Many women are childless – in 2013, there were 513,000 couples without children, and that’s expected to rise to 757,000 by 2038.
-Women are having their children later – the average age in 2018 was 30.3, compared to 1980 when the average age was 25.7.
There is more recognition today that being a mother does not just come from giving birth. But it is more about being maternal. These women are the aunts, teachers, mentors, friends that we all have in our lives. They might not have given birth or raised children but make a significant difference to the young people in their lives. They’re just like other women except without children to raise.
In 2021 let’s celebrate how womanhood and motherhood have changed in the last 100 years. Let’s celebrate that there is no one-size-fits-all and let’s celebrate the impact all the women in our lives have made on us. Tell the women in your life they’re amazing and that they matter to you. No doubt they think you’re amazing too.