What’s the biggest gift your mother gave you? Is it your strong independent streak? Your insane sense of humor? Or was it post-soccer-practice Taco Tuesday that she somehow pulled together every week?
With Mother’s Day coming up this weekend, we’re thinking a lot about the beautiful gifts that mothers give—and about how we can pass along similar gifts to the children in our lives. (It’s no surprise that 89 percent of moms say they’re happy to be turning into their own mother when it comes to parenting—our moms are incredible!)
Maria Shriver lost her mother, Eunice Kennedy Shriver, more than three years ago—but that doesn’t mean the incredible gifts her mom gave her have faded in any way. In fact, Maria has made a short (and holy-wow, seriously emotional—get out the tissue box!) film celebrating the gifts her mother, founder of the Special Olympics, left her with.
Beyond being super moving—it WILL make you want to call your mom!—Maria’s film, “The Gift My Mother Gave Me,” is available to watch and share with other parents right on Facebook. And one of the most touching things about it is that, thanks to the people over at P & G, each time you share the film with a Facebook friend, they’ll donate a dollar to the Special Olympics—up to $50,000 that will help to promote the basic tenants of acceptance, encouragement, and community—three things I think almost any mom hopes to instill in their children.
Have you seen the video? Did you go through two tissues like I did? What’s the biggest gift your mother gave you? Tell us in the comments!
In just a few days, Michelle Obama will be traveling to London with the Presidential Delegation to attend the Opening Ceremony of this year’s Olympics. As the leader of the delegation, which includes former Olympians (such as gymnast Dominque Dawes and soccer player Brandi Chastain), the First Lady will visit the U.S. Olympic Training Facility this Friday. In addition, SpongeBob and other celebrities will help host a Let’s Move! event for 1,000 children of U.S. ambassadors. Healthy foods such as nuts, granola bars, and water will be served.
Back in the U.S., the White House (with the help of MeetUp.com) will be hosting a Let’s Move! Olympics Fun Day on Saturday. The goal of Fun Day is to cheer on Team USA and also “turn the Olympic spirit into action” by having different events across the nation. As part of the Partnership for a Healthier America (PHA) initiative, the White House is committed to get 1.7 million kids moving and to ”inspire a new generation to strive for excellence,” said Michelle Obama. Growing up with fond memories of watching the Olympics, the First Lady believes that “winning isn’t the goal” of the games; instead, it’s being able to “push and believe in yourself” and to refuse to give up despite obstacles.
Help support the more than 315 Special Olympics Team USA athletes traveling to Athens, Greece from June 25 to July 4, 2011 for the Special Olympics World Summer Games. All you need to do is “like,” share, or comment on Procter and Gamble’s “Thank You Mom” Facebook page and it will donate $1 (up to $250,000 for each fan’s interaction on the page) to Team USA.
I volunteered with the Disney VoluntEARS at the Special Olympics Metro Tournament at Queens College in Queens, N.Y. a few weeks ago and saw some of the amazing athletes, like powerlifter Kelletia Clayborne from Queens Village, .N.Y., who are proud and excited to represent the USA at the World Games. The athletes need to raise money for the trip to Greece, so every donation helps, and thanks to P&G, we can all help out. If you spread the word to 10 friends, that’s $10 you helped donate with just a few clicks.
Visit the “Thank You Mom” page to follow the games in Athens, watch videos from moms of Special Olympic athletes, and create your own video message.
I have an uncle with Down syndrome, and a cousin with an awful disease called Rett Syndrome—she’s 28 and has never walked or talked. Knowing how challenging my uncle’s life has been at times, and how downright brutal my cousin’s has been—not to mention what their parents have been through—I have never had any tolerance for what’s now being called “the R-word.” It was depressing enough last year when President Obama likened his bowling skills to the Special Olympics, and more recently when White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel admitted that he called liberal activists “f—ing retarded.” But what I always find particularly tough is when the word is casually used by people in my own circle. It’s so jarring when someone I like—someone who’s unquestionably smart and decent—tells me a story and throws in some variation of “It was so retarded.” Depending on my mood and how comfortable I am around the person, I’ll either ask them not to use that word that way, or I’ll simply stay quiet.