Generally speaking, holidays can be stressful and emotionally draining, whether it’s because work or life gets busy, or you have personal ties that can make big moments like this challenging. Mother’s Day can be one of these holidays, especially if there’s a mother or female figure in your life that you’re missing or have a less-than traditional relationship with these people in your life.
We know that experiences with Mother’s Day can vary, but the representation of a perfect family dynamic can be very present on social media and online despite that. In an effort to acknowledge different experiences, we spoke with The Sill team about how they view Mother's Day.
1. Jess, VP of Marketing
“Growing up, my mother was the most supportive, loving mom one could ask for. However, one of my earliest childhood memories is one of deep sadness. The image is ingrained in my mind - my mom sobbing face down on her bed, my father comforting her, over the loss of her own mother.
As a child, I didn't fully comprehend; it took growing older, and celebrating many Mother’s Days, to truly appreciate her strength. There she was, in her mid-20’s with two young children (& soon to be a 3rd) at home coping with the sudden loss of her own mom and sister within the same year. How she showed up for us every day when she was struggling herself is beyond my grasp. While she’ll always be ‘mom,’ I hope that today in adulthood, my sister and I are able to be the friends, confidants and cheerleaders she missed out on all those years ago.”
2. Karen, People Ops Associate
“I am the product of many, many people raising me. My biological mother (we call her Mum, an old-timey New England thing) taught me how to be independent and ambitious, and while she was at work we had a nanny, Lisa. Lisa was much more to me than a nanny, and since I spent most of my time with her growing up, I consider her to be a big part of who I am now. My Grams was also a fixture of my upbringing. When I wasn’t with Lisa, I was with Grams, probably watching the Red Sox.
I also have my stepmom who came into my life when I was 12, and I think of her as a mother to me as well. She taught me a lot about being scrappy, but more importantly, how to bake the best pumpkin bread.
Lastly, I consider my two sister-in-laws my real sisters, but I met them when I was only 14 or 15. They and their families have been in my life for almost 15 years now, and I leaned on them a lot in my formative years. They are now mothers to my three nieces, and I love getting to celebrate them for Mother’s Day now.
So many mother figures have taught me so many different things in my life. If I ever become a mum or mother-figure someday, I imagine that whoever I raise will have little pieces of all of these women too.”
3. Angelina, Brooklyn Shop Manager
“I’ve always understood mothers as the center of the universe - creator, healer, and my guiding light. My mother held me tight and taught me how to nurture. And here I am - a proud plant mama and obsessed with any and all things related to parenthood.”
4. Erin, Director of Marketing
“For every possible occasion that calls for a gift, my Mom gets new sneakers. Whether it’s Christmas, her birthday, Mother’s Day, or just because. For most people, that would be overkill. Who needs new sneakers multiple times a year? But for my Mom, it’s essential. You see, my Mom loves to walk. She spends her weekends walking, sometimes averaging ten plus miles a day, which at her age (that I won’t share in case she reads this) is no easy feat. And on the rare days she leaves her office early, before sun down, you guessed it – she’s out walking. She wears the soles of new sneakers down within weeks.
Growing up, I never understood why she preferred to spend her scarce free time walking the same old paths around our town and towns nearby. She would work all week long and then walk all weekend. To me, it seemed like she was replacing one chore with another. Wouldn’t she rather go shopping, or watch television, or go to the nail salon? But what I’ve come to appreciate, what I’ve learned to understand, is what those walks gave back to her: how they allowed her to disconnect from a long work week, and leave her worries behind at the office; how they allowed her to reconnect with her kids, who found it easier to share their feelings walking next to her, with their eyes focused ahead.
This Mother’s Day I wish more anything I could take a nice long walk with my Mom. Because I’m taking social distancing to heart, that won’t happen this May. But it will happen again, soon, and when it does – it’ll feel like a gift to me.”
5. Courtney, Junior Graphic Designer
“I like to think that I truly do have the ultimate mom. Anyone who meets my mom instantly picks up on just how warm, thoughtful and kind she is. She has the incredible power of making you feel like she’s known you for years, even if you’ve just met. The most valuable lesson that she taught me growing up, was the power of positivity. When I was young, she put a sign in my room that said, ‘Happiness is something you decide ahead of time.’ That was something that always stuck with me. To me, it meant that I have the power to choose happiness. Though some days are better than others, she taught me to look for the silver lining in everything. Her charisma and joyful attitude have helped shape who I am today, and I hope I can send a little extra love and happiness her way this Mother’s Day (by sending her a plant, of course).”
6. Kaeli, Social Media Manager
“Mother’s Day has always been a challenging holiday for me. My biological mother passed away when I was four years old, and her passing left a tremendous hole in my family's heart. She was a hardworking nurse with a firecracker attitude, and there was no one like her. At her wake, there were former patients of hers who came by to pay their respects - if you met my mother, she seemed like someone you couldn’t forget. When I was seven years old, my father remarried and brought my step-mother into my life. She was welcomed with open arms, so much so that I call her Mom, because she’s been a steady part of my life for so long.
As a holiday, Mother’s Day has always been challenging for me. How can I honor a mother who has passed while celebrating another who is still with us? For many years, when May came around, I would be somber and contemplative throughout the month and take the day of the actual holiday to celebrate the mom that’s currently with me. Now that I’ve come to terms with my mixed feelings, I allow myself to feel each and every feeling that comes along, whether it deals with my loss or my gain. Now, when May rolls around and Mother’s Day pops up on my calendar, I’m grateful to know and to love two mothers, especially when many people do not even have the opportunity to connect with one.”
7. Sara, Director of Procurement & Supply Chain
“I knew I had a great mom, but I didn’t fully realize how great she was until I had my own child two years ago. My father had his own small business which required him to work a lot while I was growing up. It was often just my mom, brother and I in the evenings and weekends. Most responsibilities fell on her shoulders.She also worked full time as well and this was always very important to her. She loved what she did and she was unapologetic of this. Even when I was young, I remember this being something I respected and loved about her. I had my first child, much later in life, but I always knew that when I did, I didn't have to sacrifice the other parts of me that I still loved, one being my career. I love being a mom but I think that what caught me the most off guard was how hard it would also be. I mean I knew it would be hard, but some days are REALLY HARD. Now looking back at my own mother, I don’t know how she did it all. She sacrificed so much and worked so hard to give my brother and I the best memories. My respect and love for her have only grown more over the last couple years. She is my role model as I navigate motherhood now. I hope that I can be the kind of mother to my son as she was to me.”
Words By The Sill
Empowering all people to be plant people — a collection of articles from The Sill’s team of Plant Experts across a variety of plant care topics to inspire confidence in the next generation of plant parents. Welcome to Plant Parenthood™.