Regardless of the country in which you live, mothers earn a special day of recognition for all the sacrifices and loving care they give to their children and family. Though in the United States, we usually reserve that second Sunday of May by buying mom a gift or doing something special to pamper her such as serving breakfast in bed or taking her out to dinner. Small children also like to shower mom with a bouquet of wild flowers or dandelions to homemade cards they made at school for the occasion. However, these Mother’s Day traditions are often distinctly different in some parts of the world than our own here.
Peru celebrates this holiday with gifts and flowers just like the United States, but they do something that we do not. They also celebrate their deceased mothers and grandmothers at their grave sites by hosting a family gathering with food and drinks in their honor to cherish their happy memories. The graveyard displays a Happy Mother’s Day wreath in Spanish to welcome the family as they enter. Later, they leave flowers on their graves.
Until fairly recently, India did not have one day reserved to honor mothers. Instead, Hindus observe Durga, the goddess of mothers during a 10-day long festival in October. This involved the entire family gathering enjoying food and gifts together. Nonetheless, they also have been following Western tradition treating mother to gifts or cooking her a dinner so she can relax with a day off from caring for the family.
Japan pays tribute to mothers, only without the need to give gifts as we do. In place of gifts, the children give their mothers a white carnation, representing sweetness and all the good things she does for them.
In Ethiopia, this holiday lasts for three days of merriment to praise mothers for all their love and caregiving through food, song, dance, and relaying stories about them to mark this important occasion. Daughters from all branches of the family prepare the vegetables and cheese to serve while the sons provide meats for the table.
Depending on where you live in the world, the traditions of how we celebrate this holiday may vary but the importance of our mothers does not. Happy Mother’s Day!