Happy Giving Birth Day were the first four words I saw when I turned on my computer this morning. That’s because today is our younger daughter’s birthday, and I was just about to send “Happy Birthday’ wishes to her. But, she surprised me with those four words! What a great thing for any child, no matter what age, to be saying to their mother on their own birthday! It changed my whole day. I decided it was a holiday for me to enjoy. Rather than sweep the floor, I just let the sweeper set. Rather than cleaning off my desk of excess paperwork, I decided it can wait until tomorrow.
I’m very glad I baked cupcakes yesterday as well as doing two loads of laundry, so I don’t have any of that to do today. When fixing lunch, it took on a whole new feeling of enjoyment. Lately, I have been having food that we had never eaten before, so continued to try something else in hopes it would be good. For example, making a cranberry pie with a can of whole berries, and spreading it over a crust of broken graham crackers, covering it with whipped cream, and sprinkling it with some crushed walnuts. I’ll call it my “3-minute pie.”
I think there should be some way to spread the word of wishing every mother a “Happy Giving Birth Day.” It’s a wonder the greeting card companies haven’t made a new category of cards they could sell every day of the year. (If they already have, I haven’t seen or heard of any.) They wouldn’t ever have to change their display for them, because somewhere, every day of every year, there is a mother giving birth. (And you know I don’t mean the same mother!)
I decided to put on my most comfortable summer clothes. I’m not much for watching daytime TV, so left it off all day. I have a new CD of only piano music, so I put it on to enjoy an afternoon of music that’s from my past. Of the 32 songs listed, I know some of the words of most all of them. It’s nice to have those words running through my brain at this time of my life. Songs like “Unforgettable,” “Fly me to the Moon” and Tommy Dorsey’s “Boogie Woogie.” Another part of my anniversary day of “giving birth,” was to take a nap. It certainly isn’t the first time I have taken a nap in the middle of the day, but today, I didn’t have that usual feeling that I should be doing something more productive.
So, because of our younger daughter sending me those four words, my day turned into a special one. We will be joining her for supper, and luckily, I had already baked cupcakes to take along. It’s been a great day so far, and it’s only 3:30 p.m. Every mother should have the same day off as that of her child’s birthday. All paying jobs have days off at some time or other. This means that in January, when it’s our older daughter’s birthday, I will be all set to enjoy another “Happy Giving Birth Day.”
For years at a time, there are many mothers who never get so much as one day off. I once read a quote about mothers and their children: “For the mother, every day their child is under 5 years of age is back breaking, and every day after that, is heart breaking.” I don’t believe every day is heart breaking, but the potential for having something hurt your child will leave the same hurt for their mother. Another quote I read is: “A Mother is only as happy as her unhappiest child.” That says a lot, and all mothers know it to be true. It’s part of being a mother.
Too bad my siblings and I didn’t ever think of wishing our mother a “Happy Giving Birth Day” during her lifetime. She would have been happy, I’m sure. After all, seven kids would have meant she could have had seven days off each of the 61 years she was a mother. That’s a whole week! I don’t think she would have known what to do with herself after always being busy every minute of every day. So, let’s get the ball rolling and declare a new holiday. It won’t ever be on any calendar, it will be up to each one of us to see that our own mother is having a “Happy Giving Birth Day.”
Kay E. Conklin is a retired Delaware County recorder who served four terms. She graduated from Ohio Wesleyan University with a degree in sociology and anthropology.