Mothers have always had one of the most important roles in the family and in society in general. This is especially true in the case in Native American culture where women typically were valued for their unique role within the tribes. As Mother’s Day rolls around again, Native American mothers should be highly celebrated for their strength, individuality and vast array of contributions to society.
A Mother’s Love
Mothers around the world have always had special love and compassion for their children. However, the love of a Native American mother was even more special and more costly in some respects. These mothers never gave up no matter what they were facing. Their loyal love has stood the test of time despite difficult circumstances and outside pressures.
Native American women from centuries ago were seen as the most caring members of their families. They cared for each child from infancy, using cradleboards, slings and baby baskets to carry their babies with them wherever they went. The child’s every need was attended. Today, these same principles of love continue to guide Native American mothers to overcome their unique struggles so that they can best care for their children. These women also nurture other children throughout their communities, displaying the sacredness of human life through their compassionate and encouraging actions.
Great Leaders with Many Roles
Many Native American women and mothers over the centuries went far beyond the stereotypical tasks of women to serve as leaders in their communities, to provide for their families and to spearhead many tasks within their tribes. These women were well respected for their everyday contributions in medicine, cooking, farming and repairs while also proving to be particularly competent in even more difficult situations. Under threat of war, many of these women protected their families, fighting courageously next to their husbands and brothers.
You have probably read stories of Native American women who served as medicine women, using herbs and plants to protect their loved ones and to nurse the sick in their communities back to health. These women understood the earth and all it had to give. They used what the earth offered to feed their families, keep them healthy and provide for them through such skills as pottery making and basket weaving. They also used what they had available to help their families and their tribes survive difficult times during inclement weather, war and famine.
Today, Native American women and mothers are still great leaders in their communities. Some have served in the armed forces while others have begun programs to help care for those less fortunate than themselves. They continue to sacrifice their time, money and personal resources to help those around them and to make their communities safer and happier places to live.
The Center of Society
These many ancient roles helped to catapult Native American women into the center of their societies hundreds of years ago. They were needed for their skills both inside and outside the home. As an integral part of society, they were well respected by men and women of all ages. In some cases, they were even believed to have more power than men to help heal diseases. Native American mothers are still sources of hope to those around them. Their faith and perseverance in the face of adversity make them great role models for their children. These women are truly inspirational to all of us.
This Mother’s Day, find the perfect way to celebrate your mother and let her know how much she means to you. A carefully chosen gift from Kachina House can show your mother how unique and special she is to you. Our hand-crafted arts and crafts are truly one-of-a-kinds just as your mother is.