Makin' the Case: Mother’s Day – Still a good idea

By Philip Case, Published:

Mother’s Day is a great idea that got so far from its original intent that its creator — Anna Jarvis, to honor her mother, Ann Jarvis — spent the last years of her life and fortune unsuccessfully fighting the commercial fiasco it had become.

While it is and continues to grow more each year, that doesn’t mean it wasn’t a good idea in the first place.

Whether good, bad or indifferent, each of us is here because someone we know or knew, by whatever name you call her, carried us inside her body and gave us birth — not necessarily the most pleasant of experiences I’ve been told but one necessary to keep the world going.

The history books tell us that on May 10, 1913, the U.S. House of Representatives passed a resolution calling on all federal government officials (from the president down) to wear a white carnation the following day in observance of Mother’s Day.

Then on May 8, 1914, the U.S. Congress passed a law designating the second Sunday in May as Mother’s Day and requesting a proclamation. The next day, President Woodrow Wilson issued a proclamation declaring the first national Mother’s Day as a day for American citizens to show the flag in honor of those mothers whose sons had died in war.

In 1934, U.S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt approved a stamp commemorating the holiday.

There’s the history; here’s the fact: It’s a day to honor our mothers if they are living and to pause to remember them if they have died. Personally, I like what Ms. Jarvis did to remember Mrs. Jarvis.

Like all mortals on our orb, no mother is perfect but from my own experience and observations I’ve made, by and large the majority make a pretty noble effort.

If your mother is still living, give her a call, give her a hug, send her a card, take her to dinner.

If, however, your mother has gone on to her reward as mine has, bow your head, close your eyes and remember as I’m doing now with my eyes becoming increasingly moist:

Erma B. Addison Case, Nov. 19, 1909-Aug. 28, 2001.

Gosh, Mom, they say life isn’t about the years but about what you did between them as represented by that little dash. And you did a lot, touched a lot of people.

Speaking for two of them, David and I sure miss you — and thank you!

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