As we get older our relationships with our children and our mothers change. Our strong, independent mother may become fragile, lacking in confidence, less active and we may have to be increasingly supportive of her.
Our children may become less interested in family as they grow up, become more independent and find their friends and activities away from home more appealing.
As Mother's Day approaches it can be a valuable opportunity to look at ways of enjoying the time we do have together. Gifts are often less important than thoughtful gestures and shared family time:
- Family photographs often stimulate great interest in young and old alike. Hours can be spent reminiscencing over 'old times', revisiting stories from childhood, remembering grandparents and great-grandparents, telling tales from your own and your children's early years. Younger children especially often find these tales fascinating and enthralling.
- Preparing food for the family is often an important aspect of being a mother. Many Mum's have their speciality dish that everyone raves about. Why not invite your mother to prepare her signature dish, spend time together discussing recipes. Invite your children and share a family meal together over a few companionable hours.
- Include your mother in family time, not just baby-sitting duties. Allow her to be part of your family life. Even if there are disagreements on some areas of parenting it may be possible to enjoy neutral activities like walks, board games or an occasional film. These times can provide you all with happy memories to smile about later on.
- Plan an outing with your friends and their mothers and discover a fun way to spend some time. A meal, afternoon tea, a show together can be a great source of fun, conversation and interest, bringing new energy and companionship into all your lives.
- Try not to be too disappointed if your children forget Mother's Day. Often young people are preoccupied with the detail of their own lives. You could be flexible and enjoy an 'alternative' Mothers Day, after all it can be celebrated at a time to suit you all.
Susan Leigh, Counsellor & Hypnotherapist, http://www.lifestyletheray.net