Mothers’ Day: more than a gift

File photo. (Childrens Book Review / Flickr)

Remember Mothers’ Day when you were a kid? Crafts were made some amalgamation of crayons, paper, somewhat sloppy writing, glue, and sparkles, and presented to our moms (and other important women in our lives) with the utmost pride and giddiness on that day in May, the day on which we specifically pay homage to the strongest and most amazing women in our lives. Now that we’re adults (or, at least we’re past the days where “colored” pictures ripped out of coloring books are acceptable gifts), we’re forced to get more creative.

Mothers’ Day gifts can be the hardest present of the year to purchase. Stereotypically, Fathers’ Day can guarantee the purchase of some form of electrical tool, application, or device for a hobby, or the simple and much appreciated gift of socks. The requirements at Christmas can always be abated by a box of chocolate or some festive ornament or decoration, if desperate measures are needed. But Mothers’ Day is different somehow.

While I’m currently mulling over the best way to showcase my lifetime’s worth of affection for someone I can openly admit is one of the most incredible people I know, I can’t help but think I’m overthinking the decision. Flowers are nice, although temporary, and chocolate is better yet, or so I’ve learned from my own past experiences, but both are arguably overused and cliché. Jewellery is nice, especially those bearing birthstones of family members, and gardening ornaments are cherished by those who appreciate the hobby. Sometimes, however, the decision isn’t that simple. Making an outright inquiry into what material object could possibly fill a void in her life isn’t ultimately a wholly distasteful approach, seeing as wants will be met and happiness on Mothers’ Day will therefore be achieved, but that eliminates the priceless element of surprise.

Having said that, however, I’m not referring to a gag gift with the potential to be either hilarious or outright offensive, or an extravagant gift that makes the most worrisome woman in your life seriously fear for your financial security. I’m referring to the moment of hushed surprise as your mom peels back the wrapping to glimpse a gift of true significance, something possessing a value beyond its apparent worth. Maybe it’s something she’d wanted for a long time, or something she didn’t even know you knew she needed. And maybe it’s neither.

I can’t pretend to know what the most significant woman in your life would best appreciate on May 12th, I can’t promise mine I’ll provide her with a satisfactory gift, and I can’t begin to even think of promising myself that I’ll be able to find something to effectively communicate everything I owe to a woman who gave me so much (a feeling in which I doubt I am alone). However, I can say I hope you and I can both stumble upon a gift that has the potential to instill something similar to the wonder of receiving a gift crafted by us as children, because looking back, I’m sure those scratched notes written in multicolored crayons, markers and stamps that were barely legible are now far more precious than a bouquet or earrings.

When May 12th swings around, remember the day is most importantly dedicated to the women in your life. While there’s no way you can ever return even a fraction of all that she’s done for you, do everything in your power to show her you love her (not only on Mothers’ Day, but every day!), and if you can successfully convey such emotion to the best of your ability, you’ve given her the best gift of all.