As a child I was amused that Mother’s and Father’s Days existed at all. Both seemed to be light weight holidays made by the rule makers for the rule makers. Forced thank yous. As I aged I recognized these days seemed important to parents and they were relatively painless bones to throw. But now as a mother of two daughters and a fetus I finally get it. As a mother it’s a day to appreciate your family, get a couple extra hugs, a handmade treasure or two and maybe a couple minutes to put your feet up. Not only are these holiday’s a good idea but totally deserved.

From left to right: Irene Szalaj, myself, Dorothy Kittner, and Margaret Bethel. My sister, first child as a 6 month fetus, grandma and mom.

From left to right: Irene Szalaj, myself, Dorothy Kittner, and Margaret Bethel. My sister, first child as a 6 month fetus, grandma and mom.

Our society tends to belittle the worth of efforts that are not easily quantifiable. I’ve worked 50-60 hour weeks in a technical position with hard deadlines. With my first child I reduced to 40-50 hour weeks and with my second to 30-40 hour weeks.  As a woman with a career and children I can say that my hardest moments and largest stresses have always come from duties that did not earn money, promotions or even much recognition. And while it’s not hard to say thank you, it is not said enough.

In an extension of Mother’s Day I’d like to thank those nurturer that form the backbone of our society – the extended family, honorary family, and caregivers; the  teachers, social workers, and faith workers. A community is built upon their sweat and shoulders and we usually take it all for granted.

In late April I got involved in two auctions that benefited schools. I did it mostly to share my art and get my name out but in the process I got a glimpse of individuals that work incredibly hard to pull off local miracles. These events brought individuals from all aspects of the community together to support a critical part of our future. I’d really like to do more in the future but for the moment I’m just going to pause and say thank you.

You know who you are. Thank you.

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