I was recently thinking about Mother's Day gifts from my sons over the years. Those wonderfully awkward clay sculptures they brought home from grade school, the colored drawings and the poems they wrote. And when they got a bit older, and had some pocket money, the bits of treasure they found. One son gave me a tiny azalea in a pot. When it finished blooming, I planted it at the side of the garden, to hide it a bit, as it was bright pink, and all the other azaleas were white. Naturally, it grew to be one of the largest shrubs in the garden. And one of my favorites. To this day, the clay raccoons and nests and the handprints cast in sandy plaster grace my coffee tables.
This morning I thought about turning the tables. What would I give my boys for Mother's Day? Of course I once gave them the biggest gift of all. I gave them life. And in the moment of their births, they gave me the biggest gift of all in making me a mother. Their mother.
So now I want to renew that gift of life. It occurs to me that what is driving my passion for our clean air fight is the thought of my children -- and their children -- inheriting this home, earth. Inheriting life -- giving air and water. Inheriting what we have built -- skyscrapers, ships, schools, hospitals. Inheriting what we create too -- books, art, gardens. Wars. Peace. Inheriting all that is great. And not so great.
Mothers give the gift of life gladly. There is very little that I would take away from the gift that is our home planet. They can generally be categorized as the things that cause suffering. Certainly one of them is the poisons we have added to our air, water, soil and food. Our children don't need them. Neither do we.
So for Mother's Day, my wish is to give my children the promise, at least, that I will do whatever I can to clean up the mess my generation has been partly responsible for making. I'll give them the gift of showing them that change is possible. I'll give them the gift of showing them that love can be a force for political good. If we love this earth, our home, enough, we can give our children's children the chance of living in as splendid a place as the one we inherited from our parents.
|globeandmail Video: Brothers arrested in New Orleans Mother's Day parade shooting http://t.co/UOG6vqn8TA|
|NOLAnews Mother's Day shooting suspects have ties to 7th Ward gang, police say http://t.co/iPXH01R6x3|
|BetsyMTP Culture of violence: One New Orleans Mother's Day shooting victim a little boy, 2nd time he's been injured in shootings in his 10 short yrs.|
|laurieblakeman Had a fantastic time volunteering with Meals on Wheels for Mother's Day. We delivered to some amazing seniors,... http://t.co/FmpmwqgbiD|
|nynewsn Two brothers arrested in New Orleans Mother's Day parade shootings, victim toll rises http://t.co/5894e9eja4 #newyork #nyc|
|The_Gambit Akein Scott's brother and 4 others in custody for Mother's Day shootings: Returning to the intersection of Fr... http://t.co/cmMXipiVal|
|NOLAnews Mother's Day shooting suspect Akein Scott hid at 22-year-old woman's house, police say http://t.co/cT5LRAIYHF|
|BetterAfter50 There's a strong cord that connects dogs and their owners. Read this #BA50's Mother's Day story here. http://t.co/G5dKwRLRVV|
|AntDeRosa Mayor Landrieu, Law Enforcement officials announce arrests in Mother's Day shooting http://t.co/xjDZX4XewI|
|The_Gambit Blood drive Wednesday for victims of Mother's Day shooting: The New Orleans Musicians' Clinic has finalized pl... http://t.co/YOWb6iGEj2|
|The_Gambit Akein Scott in custody: Akein Scott, the 19-year-old suspect in the Mother's Day second line shootings, was a... http://t.co/iq9BvrFWTx|
|MSchleifstein Mother's Day second-line shootings related to gang battle, authorities say http://t.co/HeSndxMHTp|
|iNewsroom [ALERT] Police: 2nd suspect arrested in Mother's Day parade shooting that wounded 20 in New Orleans.. | AP #Breaking|
|AntDeRosa Suspect charged in New Orleans Mother's Day shooting http://t.co/QXDXs5OAkt|
|NOLAnews BREAKING: Landrieu confirms more arrests in Mother's Day shootings, including for harboring a fugitive - http://t.co/LUyYXLXwK0|
|BreakingNews Live video: New Orleans city leaders hold news conference to discuss Mother's Day parade shooting - @NBCNews http://t.co/faoOImvhmg|
|The_Gambit Big blood drive set for Wed. on Frenchmen St. in response to Mother's Day shootings. Info: http://t.co/NjCm6vgj7K|
|TheLensNOLA Loyola scholar C.W. Cannon: Mother's Day horror coincides with a sea change in public attitudes toward parading. http://t.co/XWH4KJ2LOZ|
|NOLAnews Second suspect in Mother's Day shootings arrested, sources say http://t.co/vUQj0YEkZQ|
|NOLAnews Second suspect in Mother's Day shootings arrested, sources say http://t.co/dqOmyRmRF0|