Mums are officially celebrated at different times around the world. In Australia, as in Denmark, Finland, Italy, Switzerland, Turkey and Belgium, we honour our mums for all that they do on the second Sunday in May. Breakfast in bed with burnt toast and cold coffee is served by little humans wanting to make their mum feel special. Homemade cards with scribble and glitter glue induce a tear, and some teenage boys even manage to shower, knowing they’ll be hugging their mum.
However, here at The Coach Place, we know how complex and messy life can be. While for many, Mother’s Day is joyous and precious, where every moment is to be remembered, for others it’s a day to survive, filled with pain or intense grief. We also know that there’s not just one type of mum. So we want to send love to all the mums and mother figures out there: the single mums, the stay-at-home mums, the foster mums, the adoptive mums, the aunts and the working mums – all who are doing their best to raise little people to be well balanced and healthy adults. We send love too, to the mums who have compromised, had their hearts broken or lost themselves.
We're thinking today of the women who want to be a mum desperately and aren’t, and of the mums who can’t be with their babies. Our hearts our hurting for the mums in India fighting a pandemic nightmare and for the mums who are consumed with worry for children who are not doing great.
On a personal note, I am a single mum to three teenagers, and today I feel both tired and grateful. I’ve just finished packing and preparing for a week ahead of work with travel, and we're about to go to my 15-year-old’s footy game. Then there'll be a quick grocery shop. Not funny. At 5 pm we'll gather for an early dinner at our favourite Italian restaurant with my amazing parents and gorgeous brother. There'll be lots of love and laughter at the table. If I could remove the grocery shopping, it would be the perfect day.
It goes without saying that being a single mum was never ever my plan. Being their mum is the most important thing I do and I often feel like I’m not getting it right. The responsibility of single parenting can be overwhelming at times. Cereal for dinner happens and I often can’t find the netball uniform. But despite the blips we are always the #stephensontribe. We are fierce in our love and loyalty to each other. I know they appreciate me as their mum. We are connected, talk about almost everything and Friday night pizza with them is joy. I love being a mum and the privilege is not lost on me. The bits I get most right are the lessons I learnt from my mum (Sandra). She has worked in this business beside me for 15 years. I have known every day of my life that she loves me. I know – what a blessing to be able to work with my mum!
I want to finish this Mother’s Day post with two important points:
- Huge love to all the boys and men in the world who support, love and advocate for mums. We really are all in this together.
- Here’s to all the girl gangs who make motherhood survivable. Girlfriends who love their girlfriends hard, do make everything possible.
PS: That photo of the four of us is one of my most favourite memories from our three months in Italy together. This square was just near our apartment in Lucca, and it was captured by our friend Cody, who has just become a mum!
Happy Mother’s Day.
– Lisa Stephenson, Founding Director, The Coach Place Global
Mum to James, William and Mabel. Daughter to Sandra.
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