This Mother’s Day, Swing for the Fences

Don’t look now, but Mother’s Day is only about ten days away.

And we all know how moms are, God bless ‘em: they’ll smile and be genuinely happy with nearly any gesture of appreciation. But as a son and a husband or co-parent, don’t settle for a “bloop single” when honoring your mother and your children’s mother.

This year, why not swing for the fences as you show the moms in your life appreciation and love?

There are many reasons to do this, and here are two:

1 – These women deserve your very best effort.

A card, a gift and a good meal should be the bare minimum. If all they get is a phone call on Mother’s Day, that might not be enough. These women should be treated like queens that day—all day. That doesn’t mean you have to spend a king’s fortune, but you should invest some of your valuable time and a little creative energy planning for how you’ll honor her, and help the kids honor her. Honor her for her tireless devotion and her role as a stabilizing, unifying force in the family.

2 – As with most of what you do as a father, your children are watching.

Your all-out effort to express gratitude and love to Mom sets a powerful example. On the other hand, what if you do a frantic last-minute run to the store with the kids on the Saturday before Mother’s Day? Or, what if you call your mom Sunday afternoon and say, “I’ll get you a card in the mail next week”? That also sets a powerful example, but not the kind we should be striving for.

So be intentional about honoring the mothers in your life this year, and start today!

Ask your kids for ideas; get them thinking about ways to honor their mom. It could be as simple as a list of things they appreciate about her written all fancy and put into a frame. Or it could be an elaborate memory book or photo album. Have each member of the family write a poem or paint a picture for Mom or Grandma. Or maybe spend the entire weekend honoring her with trips to museums, galleries, parks, coffee shops—all her favorite places.

And if you’re a divorced dad it’s especially important for you to show respect to your kids’ mom and help them find creative ways to honor her. As hard as it may sound to you, it’s good for them to do that.

Make her feel special, dad. Express your love and appreciation. Your kids are watching you.

What “home run swings” have you taken in the past to honor your mom and/or your wife—and how did it turn out? Share your insights and see what works for other dads on our Facebook page.

Action Points & Questions for Reflection and Discussion:

  • Ask your kids’ mom: “What’s your favorite Mother’s Day memory?” Try to do something similar for her this year.
  • Spend 15-20 minutes just thinking about reasons why you appreciate your kids’ mom. Make a list to give to her or use it to honor her in some creative way.
  • Do the same for your mother.
  • What have you been modeling for your children about how to be a devoted adult son to your mom? What can you do to improve in that area?
  • After plans are made for the moms closest to you, ask your kids about a single mom they know who might not get honored for Mother’s Day. Brainstorm together about ways you could help meet a need that she has, recognize her devotion as a mom, and maybe help her kids honor her.

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There may be no more important work than turning the hearts of fathers to their children, and that’s what this is all about. We’re seeking to repair, rebuild and restore effective fathering for the benefit of children and families everywhere.