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Honouring the greatest caregivers – Mothers

Honouring   the greatest   caregivers – Mothers
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"All that I am, or hope to be, I owe to
my angel mother"
Abraham Lincoln

Mother's Day is an event celebrated every year to show regard and reverence to our mothers. However, the unconditional, selfless love she showers, is felt during every moment of her presence. It is an endless journey of love, care and blessing. Mother's Day is celebrated to respect her selflessness. It so happens that children are usually identified with their father's name and their acceptance in the society is mainly paternal, giving little credit, importance and name to the mother. Mother's Day is recognition to a mother's kind, compassionate and altruistic care of her child. The celebration of this day is our humble way to rejoice the bonding of a mother with her child. Different countries celebrate Mother's Day on different dates. In India, it is celebrated every year on second Sunday of the month of May.

This day has been celebrated worldwide for a long time. The Greeks were very loyal to their maternal goddesses, as they used to especially worship them on the occasion of the annual spring festival. Ancient Romans celebrated a spring festival named Hilaria, which was dedicated to the Cybele (mother goddess). The devotees made offerings in front of the mother Goddess Cybele in the temple. Christians celebrated this day on a Sunday, exactly three weeks before Easter.

In England, Mother's Day celebration started around the 1600s, by worshipping Virgin Mary. In the USA, it was an official celebration started in the year 1872. Surprisingly, Anna who is the founder of Mother's Day in the US was an unmarried woman and never had kids. She was highly motivated and moved by her mother's (Mrs. Anna Marie Reeves Jarvis) care and love. After her death, she decided to popularise a day dedicated to mothers to give them respect and regard. Today, this day is being celebrated in many countries around the world.

In France, the birth rate was very low during the end of the 19th century. Hence, attempts were made to bridge the gap by honouring the mothers of large families. In 1906, ten mothers who had nine children each were awarded. In Japan, Mother's Day was initially commemorated during the Showa period as the birthday of Empress Kojun (mother of Emperor Akihito) on March 6. In Nepal, there is a festival equivalent to Mother's Day, called Mata Tirtha Aunsi ("Mother Pilgrimage New Moon"), or Mata Tirtha Puja ("Mother Pilgrimage Worship"). It is celebrated according to the lunar calendar. History has given us enough reasons and ways to honour the most beautiful relationship of our life.

In India too, this concept is being very rapidly accepted and appreciated, there is a huge awareness now on this issue. People have started acknowledging the immense love and uncountable sacrifices a mother makes for her children. Even though the celebration of Mother's Day is a foreign concept, Indians have willingly accepted and participated in this festivity. Since our country is a culturally diverse country, people have realised that mothers should be respected and a special day dedicated to them will motivate and remind everyone of the tremendous hard work mothers put in a child life.

New technologies like the internet and global connectivity have immensely helped people all across the world in celebrating this great day. Now even though people are physically distant from their mothers, they can stay connected with their mother through WhatsApp, Facebook, Twitter, Skype and the likes. Observance of this day reminds us of the care, love, hard work and persistent efforts a mother makes for her child. This life actually can't be imagined without the help and support of the mother.

In India, mother is worshipped as a Goddess who loves, cares and supports her children unconditionally in any situation. Indians have adopted different ways to express their dedication towards their mother. Some of them wish their mother, some buy cards, flowers, gifts etc. In schools, Mother's Day is celebrated to make young children understand the importance of mother in their lives. In schools, the Mother's Day celebration is very popular among children, as little children are very attached to their mothers. Mothers of little toddlers are especially invited to the schools to be part of the celebration. Each student expresses their gratitude towards the mother through poem recitation, essay writing, speech narration, dancing, singing and conversations. Mothers shower their endless love and affection by bringing some lovely homemade dishes to the school. They indulge in dancing, singing and playing games. Kids also give their mothers a handmade greeting card or other gifts. In some cases, children are taken to restaurants, shopping malls, and parks with their parents to enjoy in different ways.

For the ones who follow Christianity, a special prayer is organised on this day in honour of the mother. Surprise parties, gifts, outings and simple things like greeting cards and breakfast in the bed makes a complete happy day for the mother. Some children buy ready-made gifts, clothes, purses, accessories, jewellery etc to impress their mothers. Mother Day special dinner at home or restaurants with the family are other beautiful ways to celebrate mother's dayGovernment's Gift to Mothers

The government of our country is committed to ensure that every mother's right is protected. The amended Maternity Act is an initiative in this direction. Women working in the organised sector will now be given the privilege and right to get paid maternity leave of 26 weeks, up from 12 weeks previously. Around 1.8 million women will be benefited from this scheme. This law will apply to all establishments employing 10 or more people and the entitlement will be only for the first two children. the For third child, the entitlement will be for 12 weeks only. This new law will help mothers to sustain and continue their work even after pregnancy. After the implementation of The Maternity Benefit Act, 1961, a woman's employment is protected during the time of her maternity. The owner is obliged to pay full salary during her absence from work, to permit the mother to take care of her child. Even in the case of adoption (below three years of age), the Bill provides for 12 weeks of maternity leave to the woman to help her take care of the child. In the case of a commissioning mother (defined as a biological mother) who uses her egg to have a surrogate child,

This new law will help mothers to sustain and continue their work even after pregnancy. After the implementation of The Maternity Benefit Act, 1961, a woman's employment is protected during the time of her maternity. The owner is obliged to pay full salary during her absence from work, to permit the mother to take care of her child. Even in the case of adoption (below three years of age), the Bill provides for 12 weeks of maternity leave to the woman to help her take care of the child. In the case of a commissioning mother (defined as a biological mother) who uses her egg to have a surrogate child,

Even in the case of adoption (below three years of age), the Bill provides for 12 weeks of maternity leave to the woman to help her take care of the child. In the case of a commissioning mother (defined as a biological mother) who uses her egg to have a surrogate child, 12-week period of maternity leave will be calculated from the date the child is handed over to the adoptive or commissioning mother. The Bill also recommends every establishment with 50 or more employees to provide crèche facilities to working mothers within a prescribed distance. The woman will be allowed four visits to the crèche in a day. This will include her interval for rest. Apart from this, there are schemes like Mother and Child Tracking System (MCTS), Indira Gandhi Matritva Sahyog Yojana (IGMSY), and Conditional Maternity Benefit (CMB), which were introduced for the benefit of mothers.

A mother is a source of strength, patience, courage, faith and love. The amazing fact is that babies start bonding with their mother right from their moment of coming into being inside the womb. The nine- month journey is the most beautiful experience a woman experiences in her life. Giving birth to a young one is the most adorable and heavenly emotion a mother goes through

. So, a celebration is a way to thank all the lovely mothers who undertake so much pain and suffering sportingly. By rejoicing and recognising their efforts, we encourage motherhood. Praising her with kind words will make her forget all the pains she has undergone and would help her continue to love all her children.

Selfless, unconditional love is all that she showers. She protects, scolds, laughs, restricts, cooks and takes care of her children. In any situation, our mother is the first person we look up to. Our mothers are very special. She is an institution in herself. She teaches good manners, etiquettes, morality, humanity and helping others, whenever needed. It is rightly said, "God could not be everywhere, so he created mothers".
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