Me (In Calgary on the phone with my mother -in- law In Nigeria): “Happy Mother’s Day mummy…”
My kids: (whispering and trying not to disturb the call) “Dad is it Mother’s Day?” You can see the terrified, “Huh Mother’s Day? We didn’t get or make her any gifts or cards” look on their faces …LOL the poor dears.
Some of the joys of expat or triangle living I term it.
As you might have guessed, we are Nigerians currently living in Calgary. We have had the pleasure of living in other countries and the “Mother’s Day confusion” never ends.
So, a day in the year has been set aside to celebrate moms (permit me to add single dads who are both mom and dad to their kids – Hey guys we see you).
Mother’s Day, Mothering Sunday are some of the names this day goes by. Interestingly though, this celebration is not marked on the same day globally like Father’s Day.
In Canada, the Netherlands and the US, it is marked on the second Sunday in May; in France, it is either the last Sunday of May or the first Sunday in June if the last Sunday in May is Pentecost and in the Nigeria, it is the fourth Sunday in Lent so usually in March. Go figure.
I remember our first year as expats. We were living in The Hague then and my poor hubby well he was in for a treat. He remembered the Nigerian date but apparently was astounded (I gathered later) why it was difficult to find a large variety of Mother’s Day paraphernalia. Don’t worry he didn’t disappoint… he pulled it off with cards, gifts and all J. Fast forward to May and imagine his shock when the kids came gushing to him about Mother’s Day again. My kids have always been saved by their schools on when to prep for Mother’s Day. Weeks before they begin making cards, crafts and rehearsals for presentations commence. As much as they want to keep it secret, I should say as moms we know and see all but we still act surprised and pleased for our kids and their efforts.
Anyway, that was our first introduction to the “Mother’s Day Muddle”. I enjoyed Mother’s Day pampering twice that year. 2 years later we are in the beautiful South of France and the confusion continues because now there were three dates – March 30th, May 11th and May 25th… LOL and we enjoyed them all.
I have since decided to spare my family from the mental gymnastics of figuring out which to observe and am happy with them just celebrating Mother’s Day for me on whichever day it is in our current host country. However, for friends and family, we still note the dates in our previous “home” countries and call and celebrate mums in those locations.
Happy Mother’s Day! You never know it just might be today where you are.
I love this song by Meghan Trainer…enjoy MOM