Happy Parenting Day!Sunday, May 13, 2018
|Rosa 'Königin von Dänemark' - Mother's Day, May 13 2018|
A day like, today, Mother’s Day (or should it be Mothers’ Day?) is a day that necessitates a degree of reflection.
It is often that I think of my mother’s words, “Alex you will never understand because you will never be a mother.” Based on that idea it was not until I was in my early 20s that she told me that she had finally come to like me. She loved me because I was her son. This did not mean she had to like me.
Somehow my stint in the Argentine Navy as a conscript changed me enough that she liked me, too!
But it was long after she died that I finally realized that when she was alive I should have countered, “Mother you will never understand because you will never be a father.”
My mother could not understand why it was that I loved my father in spite of his terrible alcoholism. In 1951 he voluntarily left our house to live in a pension. I could not wait for the weekends when he would come to get me and take me to town to see a film and then to eat pizza at Las Cuartetas on Calle Corrientes.
When I was told by the Argentine Embassy in Mexico that I could never have an Argentine passport unless I did my obligatory conscription I jumped at the chance to be able to go to Buenos Aires to look for my father. This I did and I did find him.
Sons love their fathers in spite of everything and that is something my mother could not fathom.
And so it is that on Mother’s Day I not only remember my mother but my father, too.
With the Me Too movement and women demanding the parity that they deserve I will take Mother’s Day as the day to state that Mother’s Day is gender specific. I cannot live with this idea. I have modernized my ways. I would love to be a mother and perhaps retroactively understand my mother.
But I cannot.
I propose that Mother’s Day and Father’s Day be incorporated as one holiday called Parenting Day. Then we can all understand what it is like. On the other hand Parenting Day excludes those who are not. And so this could further go in the direction of absurdity. But we do live in absurd times.