Dear Mothers of 2020: A Love Letter to the Heroes



Dear Mothers of 2020, this is a love letter to you.

After all, you showed up as a hero this year.

No, not all of you rushed into the hospital or stood in the front lines.

And yet, you did.

You stood on the front lawns to welcome in your weary children after they came home and stayed home last spring.

You were the mom who just showed up in whichever state your clothes or home was in.

You put up signs on your lawns and took a stand.

You listened when you needed to and began showing up where you needed to.

You masked up and did so with your own flare.

You planned parties and drive-by events to keep the spirit of sweet innocence and childhood enthusiasm alive. 

You were heroic for shielding small minds from developing fears and worries about germs, maks, and isolation.

You are and were heroic for all that you have done this year, and let’s face it, before.

You are heroic for all the things you wanted to do but just couldn’t.

You are brave for working from home and for going to work.

You are strong for releasing yourself from the career you loved and put into pause to watch your child. 

You are mighty for not only working but working hard to give your homes a sense of normality. 

Dear Mothers,

This year you showed the world (more than ever before) the undeniable strength of a woman.

That she can wear every hat in the closet bin and somehow, make each one work.

This is the year of the mother.

Because every mother was given an impossible task and she handled it with strength.

And never gave herself the credit for it.

The mother who lays in bed awake with fears and anxiety is the hero of this year.

The mother who had to isolate, and quarantine, then take her babies for nasal swab tests is the hero of this year.

The mother who fell into dark depression and loneliness is the hero of the year.

The mother who gave birth during a pandemic, and could only have her husband or no one by her side is the hero of this year.

The mother who lost her job is the hero of this year.

The mother torn between watching her babies, teaching other’s babies at school, and worry for her own health and wellbeing, was the hero of this year.

The mother who facilitated zoom calls and virtual learning is the hero of this year.

The mother whose positivity was called toxic and offensive is the hero of this year.

Every mother in every situation unique to her and her family was and is the hero of this year, previous years, and the years to come.

To the mother who spoke to her sons about why they need to be careful when they’re in the city streets wearing the skin they were born in.

To the mother who learned technology and language that seemed foreign and strange but she did so she could facilitate the education of her child.

I applaud you and virtually hold your hand in solidarity.

This year, mothers stood in burned-out fields under the thick plume of smoke and sifted through the wreckage so they could rebuild their lives once again.

This year, it was a mother who grieved bravely at the podium remembering her daughter and basketball superstar husband that brought the country to tears.

It was the black and white pictures of a mother on a hospital bed overcome with deep sorrow that ignited stories from all over the world of women describing their own infant and pregnancy loss. 

And when a pinned-down man lay dying between the hard asphalt and a ruthless knee, it was his mother who was called out to in desperate pleas.

Dear Mothers of 2020, I celebrate and honor you for your compassionate souls that embraced children under harsh challenges and made it work.

2020 will be remembered for many things, and many will be honored for their sacrifices and commitments.

I will forever remember the heroes who sacrificed their sanity, health, careers, and everything else for their families.

The silent heroes who have and always will show up…

Dear Mothers, it was you, and I see you.

Thank you for being the heroes of 2020.

—Tumkeen, Writer+Poet



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