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Posts Tagged ‘friends’

I recently posted this on my Facebook page:

I thank you and appreciate you, my Facebook friends.
Like many other people, I tried to keep my Facebook postings mostly politics-free. It’s not easy to do that anymore, because there are so many things going on, so many perspectives to share, and so much passion involved. I know we don’t all agree on issues, but I still think that diversity of thoughts and beliefs, and the ability to compassionately express them, are some of our greatest strengths as a country.
Even though many of my Facebook friends see things from a totally different point of view than I do, you haven’t dropped me and I haven’t dropped you. I don’t plan to drop friends who think differently than me, and I hope we remain friends.

I received positive support on this posting from friends at all levels of the political spectrum (in the USA). Many of us realize we likely won’t be changing other peoples’ minds: even people we care for, even with ideas we vehemently support or oppose. But we are in this big boat together, and will need to make landings together along the journey. We can keep our own ideals, while being courteous and respectful to others, while delivering and receiving matter kindly, while listening to diverse thoughts and opinions. Along the way we might learn something that will help us find solutions to our current problems and impasses.

I believe in sharing as much or as little as we care to about our political beliefs on social media, while bringing our authentic selves to the conversation. (As I say this, I truly appreciate I can do so because of my right to freedom of speech, and I recognize that not all people have this privilege.) Most importantly, we can make the effort to be respectful, even when we don’t agree.

 

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Today is Mother’s Day, and we are celebrating Moms of all ages and varieties.  I am fortunate enough to have a Mom, a Grandma, and a Mother-in-law, all of whom I plan to spend time with, honoring them on their day. A shout out to these wonderful women!

I want to venture a little further on this subject, and honor those who aren’t a Mom, or who no longer have a Mother with them in this life.  I am talking about people who may find Mother’s Day to be bittersweet or difficult to handle; for instance, women who don’t have children and children who have lost their Mother.

If we have learned anything in the past several years, it is that families are diverse. Many are not the Dad-Mom-kids kind dominant in popular culture when I was growing up. (Actually, there were plenty of families who were non-traditional then too, but they were not as visible in that era.) Now we are quicker to recognize that in addition to Mothers, there are others (including step-parents, men raising children, and other family members and friends) playing nurturing roles in non-traditional ways. And there are children who, for various reasons, miss having their Mom in their lives.

 As a mature woman who never had children, I will not be receiving any Mother’s Day cards or gifts. (Although my wonderful Aunt gave three of us non-Moms a cute singing-and-dancing stuffed animal toy at our Mother’s Day brunch a couple of years ago.) I am not whining; I’m a big girl, and I can handle it.  However, I have empathy for women whose children are gone or not able to celebrate with them, and for women who desperately want children but have not conceived, and for children of all ages who have lost their Mothers. 

This day rightfully belongs to the Mothers who raised or are raising children, and the gifts they provide, and the sacrifices they make, on behalf of their children. But there are others out there who deserve recognition too – give them a hug!

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