Not sure about you, but becoming a mother started a wave of feeling things deeply in my life, in ways nothing else ever had. From the moment of seeing that heartbeat on the ultrasound, to feeling baby’s kicks, to that day of giving birth, and now each day, being both amazed and worried about my children’s happiness and health, there are remarkably high highs and very low lows.
It takes my breath away every year to stop and pause on Mother’s Day to think about the act of creation. We have a tradition in my family of going to Potbelly’s (where I had my last meal before becoming a mother!) on Mother’s Day, and then taking a family walk in Rock Creek Park to connect with Mother Nature.
We are brave, strong and imperfect as mothers. We love our sons and daughters deeply and fiercely, and we all deserve to feel like we are enough. Especially on this special day. Because you are a wonderful mother with a big heart.
If you need a tug at the heart strings or a reminder of some beautiful words famous people have shared about their mamas throughout time, check out these 25 wonderful quotes about mothers (you won't find these on any old Mother's Day card!). From entertainers, to authors, to presidents, their words capture so eloquently what it means to be a mother.
1. "To describe my mother would be to write about a hurricane in its perfect power. Or the climbing, falling colors of a rainbow." — Maya Angelou
2. "If evolution really works, how come mothers only have two hands?" — Milton Berle
3. "The phrase 'working mother' is redundant." — Jane Sellman
4. "A mother's arms are made of tenderness and children sleep soundly in them." — Victor Hugo
5. "Who is getting more pleasure from this rocking, the baby or me?" — Nancy Thayer
6. "Biology is the least of what makes someone a mother." — Oprah Winfrey
7. "Kids don't stay with you if you do it right. It's the one job where, the better you are, the more surely you won't be needed in the long run." — Barbara Kingsolver
8. "A mother's arms are more comforting than anyone else's." — Princess Diana
9. "Being a mom has made me so tired. And so happy." — Tina Fey
10. "Any mother could perform the jobs of several air-traffic controllers with ease." — Lisa Alther
11. "Mother is a verb. It's something you do. Not just who you are." — Cheryl Lacey Donovan
12. "Before becoming a mother I had a hundred theories on how to bring up children. Now I have seven children and only one theory: love them, especially when they least deserve to be loved." — Kate Samperi
13. "Sooner or later we all quote our mothers." — Bern Williams
14. "My mother was the most beautiful woman I ever saw. All I am I owe to my mother. I attribute all my success in life to the moral, intellectual, and physical education I received from her." — George Washington
15. "I remember my mother's prayers and they have always followed me. They have clung to me all my life." — Abraham Lincoln
16. "I know that [my mother] was the kindest, most generous spirit I have ever known, and that what is best in me I owe to her." - Barak Obama
17. "There is no way to be a perfect mother and a million ways to be a good one." — Jill Churchill
18. "There is such a special sweetness in being able to participate in creation." — Pamela S. Nadav
19. "[Motherhood is] the biggest gamble in the world. It is the glorious life force. It’s huge and scary — it’s an act of infinite optimism." — Gilda Radner
20. "Motherhood was the great equalizer for me; I started to identify with everybody." — Annie Lennox
21. "I believe in the strength and intelligence and sensitivity of women. My mother, my sisters, [they] are strong. My mum is a strong woman and I love her for it." — Tom Hiddlesto
22. "It’s really important for my kids to see that everyone doesn’t have the lives they see in Los Angeles... That doesn’t reflect the rest of the world. I want them to grow up with the Southern values I had — to look at people when they say hello and to stop and smell the roses. If I could do half as good a job as my mom did, I’d be pretty happy." — Jennifer Garner
23. "To listen to people and to treat them well. That's something she does with every person she meets. My mum's had cancer three times, and she's always remained charmingly free of cynicism, very open to life, and wonderfully gentle while at the same time strong. Strength does not have to be belligerent and loud." — Russell Bran
24. "She was an extraordinary mother. She was so selfless... She was one of those very, very kind people that loved to do everything for others. I could never be as good of a mother or person... She made me feel like I had a voice and that no matter what would happen, I knew she'd love me." — Angelina Joli
25. "We're best friends — she's a very special woman. She's been so supportive. She's partly the reason why I have so much respect for women. I'm never going to find someone as good as my mother, am I?" — Justin Timberlake
These are some of my favorite Mother's Day quotes to inspire all you moms. But the best Mother's Day gift a child could give to their mom is simply love. What are some of your favorite inspirational quotes for mothers? And how have you other moms celebrated?
Happy Mother's Day to all the moms!
Lori K. Mihalich-Levin, JD, is the founder of Mindful Return, author of Back to Work After Baby: How to Plan and Navigate a Mindful Return from Maternity Leave, and creator of the Mindful Return E-Course. A partner in the health care practice of a global law firm, she also is mama to two beautiful red-headed boys. Lori holds a law degree from the Georgetown University Law Center and completed her undergraduate studies at Princeton University’s Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs.