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Mother

By LYNDON ZAITZ

We have a two billion-way tie for the best mother in the world. With few exceptions everyone is certain that their mother is the most loving, kindest, funniest, prettiest and smartest mom in the world. We all love our mothers. Americans will celebrate Mother’s Day on Sunday, May 8.

Doesn’t it seem we’re shortchanging mothers when they have only one day to call their own? It is not really a day off for them—they may get to eat breakfast in bed and a dinner at a local restaurant, but you can bet that mothers across the nation will be spending part of ‘their’ day doing laundry, picking up after their kids and the many tasks a mother does every single day.

When I grew up my mother did not work outside of the house. With five children (born over a span of eight years) my mother never had a day off. Vacation? Are you kidding? Mom’s duties traveled with her: cook meals over a campfire, wash the dishes, clean the trailer.

In the 1960s the Peace Corps was called “the toughest job you’ll ever love.” How quaint. The actual toughest job is being a mother. Even tougher is being a mother with a career outside the home.

When presidential candidates say that the only female in the race is playing ‘the woman’s card,’ she retorted: “Deal me in.”

Becoming a mother and running a household gives a woman more management skills than most men will ever have. Most successful people will give ample credit to their mothers. Moms don’t just kiss away tears and bandage knees, they also instill in their children the traits they’ll need to flourish in the world.

Anyone who’s watched a wildlife documentary knows how fierce animal mothers are when it comes to protecting their brood. We’ve taken their names to heart such as grizzly mama, a mother who protects their child with the strength of a seven-foot tall Alaskan grizzly bear.

We all love our mothers. They make us who we are because they are the primary care givers. They feed us, dress us, read to us and tuck us into bed.  This of course does not trivialize the father, but it is hard to change centuries of tradition.

Moms are so grand that we have dubbed the world around us Mother Nature, which is appropriate because mother is a force of nature when it comes to her children. Nature is sunny, rainy, stormy, calm and breezy. Just like our mothers.

(Lyndon Zaitz is publisher of the Keizertimes.)