Yesterday was Mother’s Day here in the USA. I went to church early in the morning. I go alone. It’s a quiet mass and quick. At the end, ushers stood at the doors and gave a single red rose to all the women as they left. All the women. Presumably, some women were not mothers, either by choice, circumstance, or nature, but each got a rose. I suspect those roses serve as a reminder of something quite different than it does to the mothers.
Over the years, I’ve known several women who have chosen not to have children. I have never met one who has not anguished over their decision as they passed beyond their years of fertility. Some come to terms with their decision and others do not. It weighs heavily.
I also realized that several of these childless women went into “traditionally female” careers like teaching and nursing. They spent a lifetime tending to their students and patients in a way that can only be described as maternal. And some of them became stepmothers, often doing everything a mother does but entirely unappreciated. Or she might be the favorite aunt who spoils her nieces and nephews.
I just wanted to say I see you there, maybe struggling. And, yes, you deserve a rose too.
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