What most mothers want from their children is a showing of affection. A nice extra is an expression of appreciation. But most children take their mothers for granted. It’s just expected by them that parents supply needs and wants to their children. So all that immense time, effort, money, and sacrifice is something a mother rarely gets a ‘thank you’ for.
It seems to me that mothers have to let go of needing the words “I appreciate what you’ve done for me.” Instead it would be good to work on being happy with your own knowledge of what you’ve provided for that child or children. Think of the positives rather than the things you might wish were true of your offspring. So he’s not the best player on the team and she’s not the top grade-puller in her class or you see some laziness or poor judgment.
Think about the child’s healthy habits and smiles that melt you or talents big or small. A lot of that is because of you! Tell yourself you appreciate what you’ve accomplished with whoever you brought into this world. It is possible that they do tell you — or will someday — but even if they don’t you will know what you’ve given to them. And if you feel you’ve made some mistakes — well, of course, every single parent has!
And, if your own mother is still walking this earth you could say the words of appreciation to her. Try to forget anything that disappointed you as far as her mothering of you and concentrate on the positives. There are always one or two even from the person about whom it is hard to remember this.
If she’s passed away it might be good to spend some time looking at photos of her and perhaps talking to others about her. It may be that you want to write a paragraph (or more) about what she meant to you and/or some memories — maybe a funny thing she said or something generous she did.
And, finally, there may be a woman who was not your mother but who gave to you some of the things you needed from a mother at any point in your life. How about making at least a little part of this day about her?
It would be good to make Mother’s Day a day to celebrate a mother’s life in any way you choose.