Standing on the Shoulders of Giants

I was watching the Amol Rajan interview with Google CEO Sundar Pichai and was really struck on how he partly attributed his success to the sacrifices his mother made to devote her energies and time to his education.


It was heartening to hear someone of his stature publicly acknowledge how his mother’s support in his formative years set him up for success. Especially as women today are grappling with how to simultaneously fulfill their children’s hopes and dreams as well as their own. Of course, motherhood must be acknowledged 365 days of year. However, how and why did the idea of Mother’s Day come about?


According to Britannica, Anna Jarvis of Philadelphia, whose mother had organized women’s groups to promote friendship and health, originated Mother’s Day. On May 12, 1907, she held a memorial service at her late mother’s church in Grafton, West Virginia. Within five years virtually every state was observing the day and it became a public holiday in 1914.


In its modern form the holiday originated in the United States , where it is observed on the second Sunday in May. Many other countries also celebrate the holiday on this date, while some mark the observance at other times of the year. During the Middle Ages the custom developed of allowing those who had moved away to visit their home parishes and their mothers on Laetare Sunday, the fourth Sunday of Lent. This became Mothering Sunday in Britain, where it continued into modern times, although it has largely been replaced by Mother’s Day.

So, yes let’s enjoy our day of rest and also celebrate female success as a mother, daughter, grandmother, sister, carer and/or stepparent past and present.



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