“God could not be everywhere and therefore he made mothers.” -Rudyard Kipling
On May 10th, we celebrate Mother’s Day to honor and give thanks to all mothers, from our own mothers to maternal figures in our lives to the earth itself. Afterall, the gift of life is so precious, and it all began with a mother! Though we should celebrate our mothers and their work at the hardest job in the world every single day, Mother’s Day is a special chance to acknowledge and appreciate them once again. Though you may not be able to visit them this year, you can still give them a call or send some flowers to show your thanks and gratitude.
The History of Mother’s Day:
So how did Mother’s Day come about? Many historians claim the origin of Mother’s Day lies in the festivals celebrating mother goddesses in ancient times. The ancient Greeks celebrated Rhea, the ancient Romans celebrated Cybele, and the ancient Celts celebrated Brigid. It then shifted into the more secular holiday of Mothering Sunday, beginning in Britain in the 17th century. In the United States, social activist Ann Reeves Jarvis of West Virginia founded Mother’s Day Work Clubs in 1858, which was initially a workday for women to improve the sanitation of the region. Later, in 1872, writer, abolitionist, and suffragist Julia Ward Howe promoted a Mother’s Day for Peace. And finally, in 1908, Anna Jarvis, daughter of Ann R. Jarvis, created the Mother’s Day we have all come to know in commemoration for her own mother and her work in this movement. So, let’s celebrate all of our mothers this Mother’s Day and every day!
The earth, too, is having a much needed Mother’s Day right now as it recalibrates and takes a deep breath as pollution starts to clear. While the earth catches a small break, it is also a great time for us to hit the reset button. Several times a year, Women’s Quest travels to Costa Rica for our Surf and Yoga retreat. One of our favorite days of that retreat is when we go to Montezuma to zip line and jump into the waterfalls, which is a popular adventure for mothers and daughters. We also stop by the Ylang Ylang resort where the owner, Patricia Slump, takes us on a healing and relaxing sound journey.
It is such a special treat that we wanted to share it with all women because everyone is a mother in their own way. Join our Mother’s Day Sound Spa event on May 10th at 5:00pm (MDT) to enjoy a virtual sound spa hour. *Quest members join at 4:00pm (MDT) for a special self-care session.* Patricia will take us on a sacred sound journey to harmonize, equalize, and bring balance to every cell.
- Deeply relaxing and recharging
- Stress release
- Clears negativity
- Release of blockages
- Heart opening
- Sense of well being
- Lifts the frequencies and vibrations in the body
- Balances blood chemistry
I also wanted to give you another gift to celebrate Mother’s Day with a Qigong exercise and ways to self massage. Quarantine has been hard for many reasons, especially if you are used to getting a weekly massage. Here are my tips to release those nagging aches and pains and let go of the anxiety and tension, even without a massage therapist.
Qigong Exercise – Light Bouncing or Shaking
I do this Qigong exercise every single morning. Lightly bounce up and down, like you are on a mini trampoline. It will help increase circulation and lymph flow as well as help move the anxiety out of your chest. Actually, animals do this all the time — when they get afraid, they will shake it off afterward. I started Qigong in 1983 (at a time when no one had heard of it!) when I was training full-time for my triathlon in Boulder, Colorado. I decided to practice Qigong with an elderly Chinese lady who must have been over 100 years old — I was the only one in the class, and I would go every morning before my runs. We practiced this same exercise every day for about twenty minutes. My quads would beg for mercy! Finally, after about four weeks of bouncing, she allowed me to continue the Qigong practice. She told me that in order to do Qigong, you had to be grounded — it took me 4 weeks of bouncing to get grounded!
Tennis Ball Massage: One great way to give yourself a massage is using tennis balls.
Take two tennis balls and place each next to your spine about one inch out on either side. Then, roll them up and down your spine. This has become my favorite exercise to relieve my back stress from the hours of Zoom calls.
Place two balls vertically between your bottom and your ribs and lie down on top of them. Breathe deeply while shifting your pelvis from side to side so that the balls cross your entire lower back. If you’d like, you can place the balls in a tote, stocking, or sock. Move the balls about two inches up the spine each time. Go slowly in the areas where you feel more stiff.
Upper Back Unwind:
Lie down and place two balls either side of your upper back. Let the balls go into the trapezius as you roll over towards your side. You will feel how tight it is, and this spot will likely be the one that hurts the most. Stay in this tight spot with your tennis ball and slightly push. Hold that for at least 90 seconds or until you feel a release of tension. You can also lean against the tennis ball on the wall and roll up and down.
You can also use tennis balls to massage your feet, a part of our body that is often neglected. Start with one foot, spreading out each toe and wiggling them around. Then, put the tennis ball underneath the arch of your foot. Keep your heel on the floor and let your body weight sink in. Take deep breaths for thirty seconds to one minute. Slowly roll your foot from side to side so that the ball crosses your arch, repeating for one to two minutes. Finally, roll the ball along the length of your foot from heel to toe for one to two minutes.
Not yet a Quest member? Join us for virtual classes, events, gatherings, and more at womensquest.com/thequest.