Mother's Day at the Hospital

My department, Child Life and Creative Arts Therapies tackles holidays, planning the best way to make them celebratory for both the kids and the parents. Each holiday presents (no pun intended) its own special challenges and Mother's Day is no exception. When I think about Mother's Day in the hospital, I think about sacrifice, sacrifice that is made without thinking. As a mom myself, I spend a lot of time observing the mothers I work with. They sit all day with their child, forgoing food, sunshine, showers and the rest of the family. They often sit for so long that sometimes the rest of the family has to pull them away. How do you acknowledge the greatness of this love? We're going to try this Friday. In addition to a spread of chocolate muffins, savory croissants, and a variety of coffees and teas, the volunteers and I have created this tray of paper corsages. Each colorful twist of tissue paper, carefully layered, represents a child for whom the mother is caring. As I printed this picture, I noticed that it divided along a diagonal line into light and dark. It speaks to me of the task of motherhood, that implicit promise to stay with our children through all of the darkness, shepherding them, we hope, into the fullness of life. On this Sunday, I honor all mothers, everywhere.