Day 130: Morphing

Yet again, I’ve fallen behind. I might explain why in a later post.

Language evolves. The meaning of a word can shift over time as we use it differently — think of “cool,” “heavy,” or even “literally.” Today, give a word an evolutionary push: give a common word a new meaning, explain it to us, and use it in the title of your post.

So I’m going to break the rules a bit and just talk about the word. I can’t be bothered doing much else with it.

It was Mother’s Day on Sunday, in case you weren’t aware. So, continuing with that theme, I’m going to change the meaning of the word “mother”.

Side note… Where is the apostrophe in Mother’s Day supposed to go? I would have thought it was after the s, making it a day for mothers. But I read something the other day saying that it went before the s, making it a day for Mother. And so now I’m really confused. Anyone know?

Anyway. Why am I changing the meaning of the word “mother”?

When most people think of the word mother (and I am very sorry if you aren’t one of those people), they think of someone warm and loving, someone who gave them life.

But what if the word mother could change to mean any person with those characteristics? Maybe not the life-giving one. But the rest of them. What if the word mother described any person, whether you are related to them or not, who cared for you in a loving way and treated you the way that a mother should treat her child.

Not all people that give birth are deserving of the title of mother. Some don’t care about their children at all. Some don’t show them love, only hate. Some hurt their children instead of nurturing and caring for them.

There are people in the world who aren’t technically mothers, but who show more mothering qualities than the mothers mentioned above. They don’t get the title of mother. But they should.

Mother (and we’ll make it father too) should mean anyone who treats you with genuine love and care, the way parents should, whether or not they are related to you.

Happy belated Mother’s Day to all of the mothers out there, whether you are a genetic mother or not.


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