Happy Mother’s Day! Yup, today is the day.
Mother’s Day means a lot of things to a lot of people. For some, it is a beautiful day of celebration and joy. For others, it is a sad day of empty arms. Mother’s Day is painful to me for many reasons. However, it is also joyful.
Let’s talk about the pain first so it can be followed by joy. Motherhood is something I always wanted. If you know me even just a little you know I wanted to be a mother. I love kids and kids love me. I spent most of my life for one day when I am a mother. My life took a turn when I miscarried twice during my marriage. The pain of knowing you should be holding a child is unbearable. Since that time, I have really tried to overcome the pain. Sometimes I would get wrapped up in looking for the why or trying to make sense of it. There are just no answers! No answers, besides that it happened, and somehow it made me stronger.
The joy for Mother’s Day comes from a longing I have had my entire life. To know my mother loves me. This may not be something that you have ever had to think about. For instance, my Jeremy never had to wonder if his mother loved him. He was sheltered by the idea that Mothers of course love their children. For me, I often wondered if, in fact, my mom loved me. You nnow my story by now if you’re a follower. You know my mother was my abuser when I was a child and had an even more complicated relationship as a young adult.
Today my mother lives at the bottom of the US and I live at the top. We have not seen each other in over five years. Today there is no question whether or not my mother loves me. She loves me just as much as I have always loved her. We have had years and years of lost time and the fact that now she is my best friend, my sweet mother and we have to be so far apart is sad for us both. Working with what we have, we do the best we can in keeping in touch and in tune with each other.
My mom was not always a bad mother when I was young. She was in pain herself and in severe depression for most of my youth. I forgive her for the times she was a bad mother. I forgive her for telling me I wasn’t what she wanted. Every day now she tells me how much she loves me and needs me. To be loved by your mother is a great feeling. Do not wonder what you did wrong.
Some of the good things about my mom, when I was really little and motivated by rewards, she would keep a large box with new stuffed animals in it. When I was good or did a chore correctly, I would get a new toy. She made me cute homemade clothes. Every religious holiday I would get a new dress made. Mom volunteered as a scout leader, and 4-H supervisor and she was always the mom to drive all my friends around. Everyone loved my mom. She gave the most of herself to be what others needed. Still to this day people will look me up online to ask how my mom is. Mom was an amazing teacher. She loved kids. She loved the work she did with them.
My mom also taught me that women can do much more than people give them credit for. She showed me how women can be strong career women. She taught me to not give up. My mom went to further her education, after teaching all day, cleaning houses and churches, and babysitting. Then later she was a full-time teacher, worked full-time hours at the local Pizza Hut, and tutored kids on the side. Even now as a 73-year-old woman, she sews for income as well as irons, and works with special needs adults while teaching Sunday school to small children on Sundays. She never ceases to amaze me with the fight and determination she had/has to prove to everyone of her strengths.
In this current particular way, my mom has taught me true love. When I began to get the true therapy I needed, I soon found out that I desperately needed to talk about the abuse, and how it really had affected my entire life. How I see myself, how I felt /feel about my mom. Therapy challenged me to look at my pain another way. How to not let the past drive me in all my decisions and actions at present. For me to let go, truly let go I needed to let it out. I spoke with my mom one day and I said to her how therapy was going and how it had brought out so much pain and even anger.
I felt guilt for being angry. Because I had forgiven my mom way back, a number of years ago. However, the pain stayed. For the first time in therapy anger was showing up. Angrier in the idea of how I could still feel this way considering I had forgiven my mom. Therapy leads me through all these feelings. It was hard to love my mom, and be so mad about the things that have affected me for so many years, even those things I did not know. Well, this talk I had with my mom, I needed to ask her something that I felt really uncomfortable doing, but I managed to muster up the courage and I said mom, I need to talk about the abuse. I don’t want to hurt you, but somehow I need to heal and forgiving you was not enough. Getting help for the mental and physical abuse along with abandonment issues, nightmares, flashbacks etc. comes from facing the truth of what happened. My sweet mama said It may be hard to hear or see but do whatever it is you need to do even if it means we have to have some tough conversations.
Ya’ll let me tell you my mom offering me the go ahead to talk about this dark time for us, for me to be able to recover was the most selfless action to show how much she loves me. Other than this selfless act she encourages me, loves me, and supports me every way she knows how. I am blessed. My joy comes this Mother’s Day knowing I have a mother that loves me, truly loves me.
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