Happy Mother’s Day

May 12, 2012

Mother’s Day is a time to pay tribute to the women who make so much possible. I have just written this piece for The Atlantic about the single mothers I grew up with and who taught me so very much. Similar to the women I had the privilege of meeting when researching “The Dressmaker of Khair Khana,” their courage and resilience too often goes unremarked, and I wanted to share with readers the reality of what life looks like when you grow up around parents who do all they can to push you forward even when they feel they are left further and further behind by their own fight for economic survival. My mother taught me how to dream big and to never give up, even when the obstacles suffocating her own dreams grew bigger and bigger.

From the piece:

What did we learn from these women who worked one or more miserably paid jobs while battling domestic turbulence, hunting for child support, hustling to pay rent, and forcing us to do our homework all on their own?


Perseverance, perspective, determination, the need to clean up your own messes and confront your own problems, no matter how difficult. Above all, resilience. And the importance of realizing how much you have, even when “much” feels like nothing.

More from “In Praise of Single Mothers” here.

And as for new books to celebrate this Mother’s Day I highly recommend Whitney Johnson’s “Dare, Dream, Do.” You can read more and find a copy here. As Whitney writes, “Difficulties we don’t deserve happen to all of us. Yet when we dream, we begin to make meaning of these challenges.” This book is a testament to all the mothers who teach us how to defy obstacles and dream big. I hope you will enjoy it.

And Happy Mother’s Day to all of you!