This past Sunday (Lag B’Omer) the world celebrated Mother’s Day. It’s true – Mother’s Day is every day. However, we tend to take our mothers for granted. We expect them to produce and they never let us down. We may think mothers are always over protective, over sensitive and controlling. But in reality, mothers are our therapists, mentors, counselors, cooks, cleaners, doctors, nurses, seamstresses, chauffeurs and drivers, greatest cheerleaders and supporters (fans). But it takes a designated day of celebration to reflect and appreciate how integral mothers are to the fabric of the family. They are known to be the akeres habayis – foundation of the household – because without their constant contribution and involvement, everything around them would come tumbling down.
The following is a true story shared by veteran educator Rabbi Shalom Avtzon in honor of Lag B’Omer which is synonymous with Ahavas Yisroel – Love for a Fellow Jew. It was related to him by a woman named Malka about one of her incredible interactions with the Lubavitcher Rebbe.
The following is very unclear to me, it took place decades ago, but seems important to share. I will write it to the best of my recollection and understanding. I hesitated to even share this because I might have misunderstood some of the conversation but I am sharing based on my understanding and recollections. For whatever it is worth, here is the third vivid memory: [The previous two stories were about Pesach Sheini and about the power of Music].
The following is extracted from the daily study lesson for Rosh Chodesh Iyar, in the book Hayom Yom (which is a calendar for the Hebrew year, compiled by the Lubavitcher Rebbe Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson at the behest of his father-in-law, the previous Lubavitcher Rebbe, Rabbi Yosef Yitzchok Schneersohn).
At a farbrengen (chassidic gathering) during the days of sefira (at some time in the years 5651-5653, 1891-1893) someone said to my father (the fifth Lubavitcher Rebbe, The Rebbe Rashab), “The Alter Rebbe’s chassidim were always keeping count.” My father took a great liking to the saying, and he commented: “That idea characterizes man’s avoda. The hours must be ‘counted hours,’ then the days will be ‘counted days.’ When a day passes one should know what he has accomplished and what remains yet to be done… In general, one should always see to it that tomorrow should be much better than today.”