Neat and tidy date. Messy and chaotic day.
At my very base, I want to scream, “I HATE MOTHER’S DAY!!!”
Which I don’t, of course. It is important to me to celebrate my own mom and many others.
So what it is about one day in particular that makes it so stinking hard? There’s nothing more or less at stake on the second Sunday in May. Yet I have hated this day for a very long time and I can’t seem to make the good outweigh the bad. Or even offset the scale much.
I have tried many strategies. I’ve prayed for strength to get through it. I’ve focused on it being just another day. I’ve worked on not building it up to be a day that is bad so that I don’t indeed “make” it a bad day. I’ve tried distractions, shutting down, opening up, staying busy, sleeping the day away, working hard, not paying attention (ha! that’s a good one) and countless other ways to just get through.
That’s the only one that works every time. Just get through. And sure enough, every year, I do just that. But it takes its toll and this year it left me empty and raw. I got ready for church and had the typical “maybe I won’t go” thoughts. I used to think that it was copping out to consider not going. The whole “don’t let the terrorists win” deal. But after this year, I’m not so sure.
After sitting in the last row (I actually loved the pews and the feeling of the wall behind me) and doing the silent cry for most of the service, just trying to get to the car before launching into the ugly cry, I’m not so sure.
And that was just one hour out of the day. That hour and all the rest crept by until I was so exhausted on every level that I was able to fall into bed and sleep.
I survived another one.
Determined to find a way to honor this day, I’m sharing this beautiful piece by Amy Young from messymiddle.com
The Wide Spectrum of Mothering
To those who gave birth this year to their first child – we celebrate with you
To those who lost a child this year – we mourn with you
To those who are in the trenches with little ones every day and wear the badge of food stains – we appreciate you
To those who experienced loss through miscarriage, failed adoptions, or running away— we mourn with you
To those who walk the hard path of infertility, fraught with pokes, prods, tears, and disappointment – we walk with you. Forgive us when we say foolish things. We don’t mean to make this harder than it is
To those who are foster moms, mentor moms, and spiritual moms – we need you
To those who have warm and close relationships with your children – we celebrate with you
To those who have disappointment, heart ache, and distance with your children – we sit with you
To those who lost their mothers this year – we grieve with you
To those who experienced abuse at the hands of your own mother – we acknowledge your experience
To those who lived through driving tests, medical tests, and the overall testing of motherhood – we are better for having you in our midst
To those who have aborted children – we remember them and you on this day
To those who are single and long to be married and mothering your own children – we mourn that life has not turned out the way you longed for it to be
To those who step-parent – we walk with you on these complex paths
To those who envisioned lavishing love on grandchildren, yet that dream is not to be – we grieve with you
To those who will have emptier nests in the upcoming year – we grieve and rejoice with you
To those who placed children up for adoption – we commend you for your selflessness and remember how you hold that child in your heart
And to those who are pregnant with new life, both expected and surprising – we anticipate with you
This Mother’s Day, we walk with you. Mothering is not for the faint of heart and we have real warriors in our midst. We remember you.