We’ll take a break this week from commenting on our usual issues – most likely municipal or territorial politics – and focus on one of the really important things in the world.

With the approach of Mother’s Day, we are going to reflect on mothers.

Some people might dismiss Mother’s Day as an invention of the greeting card industry to promote sales of their products.

But that would be incorrect, since Mother’s Day has quite honourable beginnings. The modern Mother’s Day originated in 1908, when a woman by the name of Anna Jarvis held a memorial for her mother at a church in West Virginia.

Even if Mother’s Day had originated with card companies, it would make little difference in our view. Mothers deserve to have a special day, and be honoured either by a card or some other way.

Many of us would love to have someone in our lives to send a Mother’s Day card.

Instead, some of us have to say Happy Mother’s Day to a picture, along with Happy Birthday, Merry Christmas or just simply hello once in a while.

(We’re using the pronoun ‘we’ in keeping with the long tradition of editorial writing. However, as we noted several weeks ago, ‘they’ is replacing ‘he’ and ‘she’ in modern English, so we figure ‘we’ can also be the same as ‘I’ – I being the lone Hay River-based reporter for The Hub. If that’s confusing, sorry.)

You really don’t realize how much a mother means to you until she is gone. You think you do, but you don’t.

We particularly miss the wisdom of our mother.

We remember a long time ago expressing frustration to our mother that we never seemed to have enough money.

Our mother – used to our years of working in the less-than-lucrative field of newspapers – replied in a very matter-of-fact manner, “Well, you never made very much money.”

How can you argue with that? Every time we think how nice it would be to live in a house instead of an apartment, or to be able to travel the world, those words come back to us, and we stop feeling sorry for ourselves. We are responsible for our own lives, according to the wisdom of a mother.

For those of us who have lost mothers recently, say in the last few years, it’s also sometimes unnerving when we forget for a second that they are gone.

We might see something on television, on the Internet or in a newspaper, and think for a split second, “That’s interesting. I bet Mom would like to hear about that.” And then in the next split second we remember that there are no more telephone calls home. The phone has been disconnected and the family home is empty.

But even though our mother is gone, we will still remember, thank and honour her on this Mother’s Day.

For those of you who still have a mother in your life, be grateful she is still here and thank her for all she has done for you.

A telephone call, a visit or even a card seems to be the least you can do.

Paul Bickford

Paul Bickford is the reporter for Hay River Hub.

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