Every May during my childhood, we would always purchase a plant for my mom for Mother’s Day. As I grew older, I found it ironic that the gift we chose for my mother was a living thing that required care and attention.

Our mothers are responsible for teaching us so much about life in general from walking, to talking, to brushing our teeth and tying our shoes. Mothers pick themselves up everyday rain or shine and make the most selfless decision to love, teach and cherish us as individuals. When I think of my mother or my friends and family who are mothers, my mind is immediately filled with things that are strong, unbreakable and fierce.

A simple flower and a thank you once a year on Mother’s Day can mean very much to a mom since many of the things they do tend to go unnoticed or are under-appreciated.

After thinking of all of this I personally don’t think a flower is the best representation of a mother. In truth, anything that reminds you of your mom and her sacrifices of love can represent a mother, even a flower. I just feel that after you add up all the things your mother does, a flower could not compare to the beauty of her worth.

Now, you may be thinking, Well miss know-it-all, what represents a mother to you then?

After some research and pondering, I found that mother elephants are a great representation of our very own mothers.

Yes, I know how that sounds at first, but allow me to explain. In nature you would be hard pressed to find a greater example of a mother. Many things that elephant mothers do to care for their young align with how human mothers care for their children.  From a young age, female elephants take an interest in becoming mothers. As they grow older they assist the older female elephants in caring for their young. This hands-on experience teaches the female elephant how to later take care of her own children.

After a nearly two year long pregnancy an elephant mother gives birth. If you had to stop and read that a few more times because it sounds insane, welcome back to the article.

When I was researching I had to look over it a few times myself. About 30 minutes after birth, elephant babies are able to stand on their own and can even walk soon afterwards. The mother elephants in the herd observe and protect the baby elephants from predators as they travel. Baby elephants needs to nurse multiple times throughout the day over the next two years. Baby elephants require a lot of nurturing, care and love.

As an elephant baby grows and begins teething, the elephant will change her diet if it means giving her baby some comfort, similar to mothers that breastfeed. The elephant mother switches out her normal food choices for those that contain anti-inflammatory properties to help ease the baby’s aching gums.  Throughout childhood, baby elephants learn the basics of life, like how to find food and spot predators, from their mother. Elephants are also known to show each other affection. They can kiss and hug loved ones with their trunk, develop life-long friendships and even mourn the passing of loved ones. All of these things are very similar with how our mothers interact with us as children.

Elephants are amazing creatures  and are recognized in many  different cultures and religions  all over the world. They are highly  respected and often represent strength,  wisdom, endurance and intelligence. You can see their likeness used in spiritual symbols, such as mandalas.  When an elephant is used in a mandala it is thought to bring prosperity.

This Mother’s Day we at 35 FSS hope all mothers enjoy a relaxing break by coloring our inserted coloring page.

You are strong, wise and intelligent just like elephant mothers and we appreciate you.