Today in the United States we are celebrating Mother’s Day with various gifts, flowers, meals and greetings. It’s a wonderful day to be a mother or to have one that you celebrate. A mother isn’t always the one you were born with. A mother can come in the form of being a grandmother, aunt, sister, cousin, or friend. Sometimes they give advice, sometimes they’re just there when you need them. These women often exert a powerful influence on our lives and today we are celebrating the fact that somehow these women made us be better in some way.
In preparation for the day, I did a little research on the word “mother.” Throughout the world, the word for mother is very similar in sound and in letter. The word almost always starts with an “m” and typically includes an “a.” Below is a list of various languages and their word for mother. This list is not all inclusive by any means. Nor does it need to be. Because during my research, I discovered that while the word for “mother” has some differences, the word for “mom” is nearly always the same.

Aleut – naa/ana                Greek – Ma                 Persian – mamen
Africaans –ma                   Hindi – Ma                 Russian – mat
Cherokee – e-tsi               Irish – Ma                  Spanish – mami
Czech – maminka            Italian – Mamma     Swahili – Mama
Dutch – mam                    Malay – Emak           Swedish – Mama
English – mom                 Navajo – Ama           Turkish – Ana
Finish – A                           Nigerian – Mama     Yiddish – Muter
French – maman              Norwegian – madre

Happy Mother’s Day to all of you who have given or received the kind of love and regard that made someone think of you as “mom.”