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A Feminist / Artist / Atheist Mother’s Day Prayer for My Sons

Dear Non-Religious Lord of Time, Nature, Art, Humor, Beauty, Birth, Wonder and Oddity…


I have an unaffiliated Mother’s Day prayer for my sons (one of whom we will meet any day now) if you’re not too busy. Thanks in advance. – Lauren


Let them be safe but silly. Mainly safe though as it makes my life easier and way less anxious. But also silly because that’s more fun. No wait, safe. I choose safe. You can be safe and cool right? Boring but not broken is better until they get their own health insurance.

Let them be nice to animals. I’m pretty sure that will ensure that they’re not serial killers. Also maybe they’ll be vegetarian – but not self-righteous ones. Which reminds me, please let them not be annoying. You know – the kind of guys that explain their diet and exercise routine to you every week and really want you to be impressed. That’s really important. Thanks.

Let them tell me the important things and know that I will always listen and love them no matter how weird or revealing or dumb the question.

Also let then know that I’ve got things to do too. They are not the center of the world (no matter what grandma says). Now if they need me I will stop the world like a damn superhero but if it’s not urgent to their safety and existential well being, mom needs to work a bit. Or sleep.

Let them be funny. But like actually funny, not the guy that needs you to laugh at his jokes to feel relevant. Cause that is just the worst. Let them be clever and brief. Soul of wit and all that.

Let them be a patrons of the arts no matter what their profession. So mom can keep her job.

Let them not play an instrument that’s too hard to get good at. For all of our sakes.

Let them be creative as well as logical, fanciful as well as practical, social but able to be happy alone, generous, helpful, and the kind of guy who takes down a bully with a biting and witty speech which ends in a deserved slow clap from grateful onlookers.

Let them be the guys at the party that makes sure the girls don’t go home with douchebags.

Let them never be too trendy.

Let them be guys who can cry.

Let them not be jerks, bullies, assholes, or Republicans.

Let them not interrupt women. See above.

Let them see how useful and sexy manners are. Also let them enjoy keeping the bathroom tidy.

Let them know that we will be proud of their kindness not their success.

Let them surprise their eventual partners with flowers every now and then for no reason. It’s such a good move.

Let them like good music that you can sing along too. A good dancer is not required but being always willing to dance is.They will not play football for a number of reasons. Soccer is super unlikely too. See the first prayer.

Let them be affectionate and let mom be affectionate whenever she wants. Which is always. Unless she’s working. See prayer 4.

Let them be vocal and proud of their feminism, it will make them cooler and better human beings.

Let them be the kind of guys with nice breath and tasteful facial hair.

May all tattoos be spelled correctly and not culturally appropriative.

Let them know what an ally is and that it does not mean that you have to be the one speaking. Let them realize their privilege and do their best to give it away.

Let them understand how amazing it is to be a conscious human being that has access to Shakespeare, Beyonce, Jane Goodall, Malala Yousefzhei, Adele, Sesame Street and Barack Obama all at once.

Let them be tolerant but not excusing of dangerous misinformation and traditionalism. Let them do their research and speak truth to power. And to idiots.

Let them be safer in driverless cars than driving.

Let then be grateful of their global past, of the people they never met but who made then who they are, of the generations before and after them of which their story is a part, of the friends and family they have that will be their net of support and understanding, of all the unique and exciting things about being alive right now, of the profundity of beauty and love in a sometimes horrible world, of the power of saying what you feel and speaking up for what’s right, of surviving great sadness and loss with an appreciation of what we have, of the amount of books there are to read, of the places and wonders they can see one day, of sharing this life with those we love even knowing the brevity of it all.

Let them be good. And take care of each other. And the cat.

Love, Mom