Have you been dreading Mother’s Day this year? Do you wish it would just go away? I’ve been thinking a lot about hurting moms lately, especially with this holiday in two days. It’s not a day many moms look forward to. It only brings pain. Sadness. Heartache. When your relationship is strained or non-existent you’d rather skip that day. You know you probably won’t hear from them, much less get a card. You won’t see their smiling face to greet you with affection, hand-made cards or thoughtful gifts.They’re too self-focused and oblivious for such loving gestures. They may not even know it’s Mother’s Day. Clueless.
Where does that leave you? Set up for a lot of hurt and pain, anger and resentment.
These are times when I tend to long for the past. I linger over the positive memories from when my daughter was little and wanted to cuddle in my lap. I remember when I was her hero. Can you even remember that time?
But those days are over. That’s in the past and we can’t get it back again. We’re in a new place on our mothering journey. A place of grief and loss, tears and sadness. A place of shattered dreams and unfulfilled hopes – of letting go. A place of change. Hurts have been inflicted. Deep pain and rejection have become the norm. How did we get here – to this place of dreading Mother’s Day, a day that once was special, full of love and laughter?
Can’t we pray it all away? Is there anyone who can make it better? Yes there is, but it’s not time yet. And so we wait – with a big unknown looming before us as to when things will ever be reconciled and restored. Until that day comes, be comforted by remembering that your heavenly Father knows. He understands. He cares. He feels your pain. He is close.
What can you do now? Here are six tips:
1) Lower your expectations – this way you will be prepared and hurt less if things do not turn out as you hoped.
2) If you have had traditions on Mother’s Day, then change it up and do things differently this year. Start some new traditions!
3) Make a plan to do what you will enjoy even if you have to do it by yourself or with a friend.
4) Give yourself permission to feel your feelings. If you need to express sadness, give yourself the space to shed tears and let them out. Holding those tears in affects you physically.
5) If you feel angry, write your child a letter saying everything you want to say, let it rip – then destroy the letter. Tear it up into a million little pieces. It will help you get those angry feelings out and might prevent you from saying something you’ll regret later. Holding your anger in can cause depression.
6) Shift your focus. Instead of feeling sorry for yourself, focus on what you can be thankful for. And maybe you could you do something for someone else? You’ll feel so much better.
Above all, remember how special and loved you are by your heavenly Father. He thinks you are absolutely awesome. Absolutely. So awesome that he died for you. For. You. If he had a refrigerator your picture would be on it – wrinkles, crooked teeth, grey hair and all! He says you are perfect. You are the beloved of Christ. It can’t get any better than that, can it?
This Scripture comforts me:
“Praise the Lord. . . for great is his love toward us, and the faithfulness of the Lord endures forever.” (Psalm 117:2 NIV)
A book you might like is: My Cup Overflows by Emilie Barnes.