This year is particularly auspicious as it represents the 7th cycle of 12 years for HM the Queen, who is regarded by Thais as a mother who has upheld exemplary standards of motherhood since she came into the role on April 5, 1951, with the birth of her first child, Princess Ubolratana Rajakanya.
Mother’s Day in Thailand was established in 1976, and Thai people commemorate this day because of the queen’s benevolence towards the needy and poor of the nation, as well as her other roles as Mother to the nation of Thais.
Queen Sirikit has captured the hearts of Thai people through her devotion to the welfare and well-being of her people.
Preparations for the annual celebration begin weeks before the Queen’s birthday, with authorities and citizens all around the country raising national flags, and houses and official buildings being decorated with coloured lights and portraits of Her Majesty.
In the capital, the area around the Grand Palace is decked out with colorful lights and a firework display takes place in the evening. Early in the morning in Bangkok on August 12, government officials, the Royal Thai Army, students, teachers, and Thais from all walks of life, gather to form a procession and then walk to the Royal Palace.
As the procession makes its way through the streets, bands play popular music to honour Her Majesty. After arrival at King’s palace, the procession presents flowers to a representative of HM The Queen.
This is followed by the singing of the song Mother of the Kingdom. In the evening ceremony at the Queen’s garden, government officials light candles to pay respect to the Queen, and pray for her and her good health.
The Queen of course is one of millions of mothers nationwide – albeit the most highly respected and revered one – so Thai people also make use of this day to express their heartfelt thanks to their mothers for their unconditional love, and all the other wonderful things that mothers have provided to the native sons and daughters of the Kingdom of Thailand.
Across the 77 provinces of Thailand, Mother’s Day morning starts with the giving of alms to monks. Then, following the nationwide tradition, children kneel down before their mothers to show their love and gratitude.
Typically, they present their mothers with garlands of white jasmine and other sweet-smelling blossoms. In return, Thai mothers shower blessings on their offspring.
On Thailand’s Mother’s Day, white jasmine flowers can be seen all across the Kingdom; the white hue of the flower symbolises the purity of mother’s true love, which will never change.
Regardless of where one is from – the first word that a child learns to speak is “mother”.
She is the first person we ever know, so August 12 is a good day to tell your mother – and show her – just how much you love her.
And, as we all know, you can never say “I love you” too often to that amazing person who brought you into this world, nurtured you, kept you from harm, and showed you how to live your life with honour, dignity, kindness and grace.
Duly, The Phuket News conveys its warm wishes to HM Queen Sirikit Kitiyakara, and all other mothers here in Thailand.