Tu Pac’s ‘Dear Mama’ is a beautiful tribute to mothers all around the world, and as the lyrics go, “there’s no way I can pay you back, but my plan is to show you that I understand, you are appreciated.” Year after year, generation after generation, children have worked themselves into a frenzy worrying about the “perfect” mother’s day gift. Meanwhile, the blueprint stays hidden in plain sight.
It’s important to show our mothers how much we appreciate them, especially in a culture where mothers are often the backbone of the family. Many would argue, ad win, that Nigerian/African mothers have their unique eccentricities that make them even more special. Unfortunately, these eccentricities also make them incredibly difficult to gift sometimes.
If you’re unsure if you’ve got your mum the right gift, let me assure you it’s actually the thought that counts. Here are some ways to show your mother how much you appreciate her.
Firstly, let’s talk about food.
Our mothers are known for their amazing cooking skills, so it shouldn’t come as a surprise that the way to a mother’s heart is through her stomach. Surprise your mum with her favourite dish. You can even go the extra mile and learn how to make it yourself. Or, if cooking isn’t your forte, take her out to her favourite restaurant or treat her to a food tour of her favourite spots around town. Just be prepared for the “you should have given me the money” remarks; remember, she’s just fronting.
Another way to show your appreciation is by spending quality time with your mother.
Our mothers are often busy with work, family, and community obligations, so taking the time to just be with her can mean the world to her. Take her out for a spa day, a movie, or a shopping trip. Or, simply spend a day with her at home, chatting, laughing, and reminiscing about old times. Just be prepared for her to sneak in some advice and stories about her own life experiences. Or ask that question you don’t want to answer (don’t worry, we know *wink wink*).
It’s also important to acknowledge your mother’s hard work and sacrifices.
Mothers often put their children’s needs before their own, so a thoughtful gift that shows you appreciate her efforts can go a long way. It could be something as simple as a heartfelt card, a bouquet of her favourite flowers, or a piece of jewellery that symbolises your love and appreciation. Or, you could get her a gift that caters to her interests or hobbies, whether it’s a book by her favourite author, a painting class, or a subscription to a magazine she enjoys. Just be prepared for her to insist that you didn’t have to spend so much money or that she doesn’t need anything. Alternatively, fix something she’s been complaining about, or solve a problem she has. It will warm her heart to know you have her back.
For the Christian mamas take it to church
If your mother is religious, attending a service or religious gathering with her can also be a meaningful way to show appreciation. Yes, turn up for Jesus and your mum. Sharing in that aspect of her life can be a bonding experience – and think about the bragging rights you’d give her. Or, you could make a donation to a charity or organisation that aligns with her beliefs in her honour.
Lastly, don’t forget the power of words.
A heartfelt conversation, letter, or poem that expresses your love and gratitude can be the most meaningful way to show your appreciation. Mothers are often very emotional, and words that come from the heart can leave a lasting impact on them. Whether it’s recounting a specific memory, thanking her for a lesson she taught you, or simply telling her how much you love and appreciate her, make sure your words are sincere and genuine.
Showing your mother how much you appreciate her can come in many forms, from a delicious meal to a heartfelt conversation. Whatever you choose to do, make sure it comes from a place of love and gratitude.
Nigerian mothers are known for their strength, resilience, and unconditional love, and it’s important to honour and celebrate them every chance we get. So take some time to show your mother how much you appreciate her, and as Tu Pac said, “there’s no way I can pay you back, but my plan is .to show you that I understand, you are appreciated.” Let your mother know that you understand the sacrifices she has made, and the love she has given and that you are grateful for her every day.
Remember, the love of a mother is a priceless gift, and showing your appreciation is a small way to repay her for all she has done. So go ahead and plan that special day, write that heartfelt letter, or simply give her a hug and tell her how much she means to you.