By Gina Misiroglu
To celebrate Mother's Day, May 8th, Red Room asked several of its authors to write about memorable motherhood moments. It's been my pleasure to shepherd these articles to AOL's Parentdish, Black Voices, Holidash, and MyDaily channels, or to Red Room's Editor's Picks blog list. I hope you'll read each one, and leave a comment on their Red Room blog about the memorable mothers they've written about, and your own.
- Lynn "The Story Woman" Henriksen frames our exploration of telling stories about our lives in "Write Your Mother Memoir." Using tips from her 2002 book, Give The Gift of Story: TellTale Souls' Essential Guide to Tap Memory and & Write Memory in Five Acts, Lynn invites us along "on a Mother's Day journey into the heart of the Mother Memoir to write a true and telling tale to let her know that you do see her by answering this question: "If you could tell just one small story that would capture your mother's character and keep her spirit alive for years to come, what would it be?"
- In "A Mother's Sad Decline," Chris Rodell shares the heartbreaking details of caring for a mother with Alzheimer's. His hard work and devotion will inspire you even as you want more dignity and light for his mother.
- Zoe FitzGerald Carter's memories of her mother all involve "hammering keys and intermittent 'ping' of a busy typewriter." How lucky she is to have "Passing On a Love of Words."
- A larger-than-life mother who never apologized taught Jacquelyn Mitchard that, when it came to parent a daughter of her own, "Love Means Having to Say You're Sorry."
- A citizen-activist you've probably never heard of reminds Jewelle Gomez of all the famous black women who "nurtured our movement, strategized our political growth, and were guardians of our future." The activist was her stepmother; meet her in "Who Holds The Other End?"
- Elizabeth Rosner reminds us that our mothers won't always be around, and that we'll wish we had just one more chance to thank them for all they did for us. She does this beautifully in "Thank Your Mother While You Still Can."
- Jessica Anya Blau's mother said, "I quit!" one day to her three small children, and they were left to fend for themselves when it came to housework. Great material for a book (and the love never went away), Jessica says, in "When My Mother Quit Being a Housewife."
- Preoccupied with making her daughter's upbringing about her daughter and not herself, Jenny Block explains how she is going about "Raising a Girl (Not) Like Me."
- When she was ten years old, Elizabeth Eslami was taken aside by her mother and asked to choose whether her parents were divorced. She shares what happens after being forced to consider such a decision in "Try a Little Selfishness."
- With a mother suffering from severe depression, Mother's Day was a hard day spent, as Alice Randall describes in "Sunflowers and Yellow Roses: Mother Love," "trying to get my mother to see herself the way I saw her, as the most beautiful woman in the world."
- The contrast between the happiness she shares with her daughter and the harsh one she has with her mother makes Debra Darvick's "Now You Don't: A Mother's Day Tribute" harrowing and bittersweet.
- Jo Maeder entered one of her most magical chapters of her life with her mother as she was in severe decline. Now that she has passed, Jo's shares her pleasure in those memories (and gives some great advice) in "Coping With Mother's Day When Mom is in Decline or Gone."
Thanks to all the authors who wrote for Mother's Day. Mother's Day only comes once a year; however, these writers post diverse, exciting work about their lives and the wider world every week here on Red Room, and, again, I hope you'll enjoy exploring them all as much as I have.
–Gina Misiroglu, Executive Editor, Red Room
P.S. When you have a moment, I highly recommend Red Room founder and CEO Ivory Madison's Mother's Day blog entry from last year. In it, she traces the holiday in the United States to its feminist, antiwar roots.