Cathe Laurie: In coronavirus, special opportunity to remember what Mother's Day is all about

Sunday, May 10, is Mother’s Day in America. Usually, restaurants would be packed with reservations for every table available, florists would be busy filling and delivering orders and people would be out celebrating the special women in their lives.

But Mother’s Day is going to look very different this year.

We will be honoring mothers in the midst of a global pandemic that has caused the deaths of more than a quarter-million people across the world. In fact, for many families, Mother’s Day will actually be a time of sorrow and grief, as they mourn the recent loss of a mother, stepmother, mother-in-law or grandmother.

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Restaurants will not be crowded with families on Sunday. Flowers will most likely be delivered by someone wearing a face mask and gloves. And instead of gathering together in churches, parks or homes as they used to, many families will be wishing mom a happy day through a glass window or from the front porch, standing six feet away.

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Yet there is a silver lining about observing Mother’s Day in the midst of COVID-19.

By forcing us to dispense with the commercialized traditions that have taken over this special day — roses, cards, Italian restaurant reservations, personalized jewelry! — this crisis is reminding us of what it really means to honor our mothers.

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As a mother and grandmother myself, I can tell you what moms want more than anything else in the world: We want to know that we are loved.

As a mother and grandmother myself, I can tell you what moms want more than anything else in the world: We want to know that we are loved.

I always take great delight in the moments when my grandchildren spontaneously hug me or kiss me, or when my son, Jonathan, or daughters-in-love call me just to say hi or to ask how I am doing or how they can pray for me. Those simple gifts of love are more precious to me than any box of chocolates, bouquet of flowers or bottle of perfume.

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Being a mother is both the most difficult and the most rewarding job a woman can have. Though you cannot put a price tag on motherhood, one recent survey found that all the jobs a mother does at home — chef, math tutor, interior designer, tax accountant, driver, cleaner, counselor etc. — would be worth at least $160,000 a year. No other job on Earth demands so much of a person, but a mother’s greatest reward is not a six-figure salary. It’s the love of her children.

While I may miss our old Mother’s Day traditions this year, I am blessed to know that I am loved by my husband, by my children — one who is in heaven — and grandchildren and by God himself. That is more than enough for me.

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