When Mother's Day doesn't feel like a celebration

What do you do when you don’t have a mother to celebrate?  What do you do when your own children aren’t with you to honor all your hard work?  How do you react when you see your friends adoring their mothers and being adored by their children?  If you have dreaded Mother’s Day in the past, make this year different.

                I have to admit that I have felt jealous towards my friends who have amazing mothers that nurture, help, and build up with encouraging words.   When I was twenty-one years old my mother was out of my life, not by my choice.  I was married with a child and my mom was forced to give up a relationship with five of her eleven grown children.  I can’t make sense of it, so I don’t expect anyone else to understand how a mother can walk away from her children.   I’m certain that Mother’s Day was never the same for her because it was never the same for me.  As my family grew to five kids of my own, I’ve never been able to fully enjoy Mother’s Day the way I envisioned I would.  My mother passed away when I was thirty-one so my hope of a restored relationship and the hope for a  happy Mother’s Day Celebration with her was finished.  Honestly, not having a mom all these years really stinks.  After 26 years of parenting, I’ve learned to manage my emotions. 

  1. The heart break of what my mother did, cannot dominate how I feel for the rest of my life.

  2. I’ve changed my expectations, planning my own day.

  3. My kids don’t need to suffer because of the choices my mother made.

  4. I can show my children that motherhood is notable.

                After I was divorced, my children were not always with me for every holiday.  My ex-husband and I always made sure that we had our kids on Mother’s Day and Fathers Day but then my new husband and I moved out of state.  Initially all of my kids moved with us but after a while, in their teenage years they chose to move back to their father’s for a time.  Mother’s Day reminded me of my first Christmas without my kids.  I know we are suppose to share and feel like we have done a generous thing, but sharing my children on that first holiday made me angry and extremely sad.  I’m thankful to say that eventually it got easier.

  1. I let God heal my broken heart.

  2. I did not project my anger onto my kids or make them feel any guilt.

  3. I began to thank my children for making me a mom, at times giving them a gift or a card.

  4. I accepted Gods delight over me in the way I love my children.

         I was in a department store and observed a mother and daughter shopping together.  The daughter was about my age and the mother would have been close to my mom’s age.  It really hit me at that moment that I didn’t have a mom.  No mom to shop with, no mom to cook with, no mom to love my children.  Although it hurt intensely to be reminded of what I didn’t have, I knew that I needed to focus back on my own children.  My oldest child is a girl so we’ve shopped together, vacationed together and spent hours talking about life.  I have been the mother to her that my mother was not able to be to me. 

  1. I allowed God to use my experience to change me.

  2. I taught my children to forgive.

  3. I rejoiced in all the good that God has done. 

        If Mother’s Day is a difficult day for you, take back the day!  If you have spent even one Mother’s Day feeling like you don’t matter, than you need to read this verse in the Bible.

1 John 3:1aBehold what manner of love the Father has bestowed on us, that we should be called children of God!