Revising Mother’s Day Malaise
Many women have a complicated relationship with Mother’s Day.
While I love celebrating my own mother and all the women I know who are moms, I well remember and often revisit the general malaise, underpinning of uneasiness, and unexplained discontent the season of Mother’s Day can usher in.
On the Journey
The overwhelm of underlying feelings depends on where you find yourself on the mom journey.
Maybe you struggle with the “not yet” phase of getting (or staying) pregnant.
You might find yourself desperately clinging to the dream of your own child.
You could be in the waiting season of adoption.
You might find yourself in a position of realizing that you are unable to have a child.
Do you sit in singleness with no hope of a baby in your immediate future?
The ads on social media and various digital show platforms have begun. Mother’s Day cards and gifts are on display in stores, and restaurants have begun the Mother’s Day lunch special push.
The celebration buildup will grow in intensity from now until next month.
Loving mothers are incredible women and of great value in our lives. We celebrate, support, and love them for all they do for their children, both small and grown.
This post addresses the not yet, almost but not quite, never will be, don’t know if it will happen space.
The difficult, painful, often hollow arena of awkward that most people avoid during this time of year.
A Possible Plan
If you recognize your struggles here, you are not alone. Many women find themselves camped in their pain during this season.
It has been a while since I occupied the paralyzing space of active infertility. I stayed there for a time (okay, a loooong time) and have had enough years in between that I am able to see it with more clarity from the other side.
If any of the above describes you, may I offer a suggestion this year?
We so often get caught in the unexplainable malaise or uneasiness of our pain, fear, frustration, humiliation, and uncertainty that we find we are stuck in the miserableness of anything to do with Mother’s Day.
What if we revise our story just a bit this year?
What if we spend some time in reflection apart from our fertility journey.
If you are a person of faith, pray. If not, try praying.
Ask God for His peace this Mother’s Day season. Pray for understanding of your uniqueness. He created you as a beautiful individual.
Take a few minutes and make a plan. What will you do to celebrate you? To recognize the unique person who faces you in the mirror each day.
Make a plan with your husband, family members, or friends. Do something that makes your heart sing.
Shift your focus from who you are trying to be to who you are. Love yourself in this place, right now.
It doesn’t have to be a grand plan…
Go for a bike ride.
Make a restaurant reservation, a place you’ve always wanted to try. (Probably best to do this a couple days before Mother’s Day.)
Sign up for an art class that week.
Start a new creative project at home—invite a few friends over to participate.
The point is to add a new twist and revise/revitalize you and shake you out of the Mother’s Day malaise, even for just an evening.
This won’t magically fix your situation but it might help you rediscover a little life joy.
Invite others to participate—close people will welcome the opportunity to help you in some way during a time when they may have no clue what to do or say.
On Mother’s Day, spend time writing a letter or two (or more) to your own mom and to other women who have mothered you. Let them know how much they mean to you and specifically name how they let you know they cared and what they did to mold you in healthy ways. (Write these even if they have passed away.)
When you have finished your letter or letters then try to think of a younger woman in your life, work, community, church, etc. who might need you to live out some of these helpful acts in their life.
So often when we reach out from our pain to someone else in need it lightens our emotional burden.
You are a unique and special person, different from anyone else in time. Rejoice in it. Give thanks for you and who God created you to be.
Revise the malaise for a little while and celebrate the uniqueness of the one and only you.
I’m praying for you.