We have a lot of new members, and with Mother’s Day just around the corner, I thought I’d share some highlights from the collective wisdom of the ATN blogging team about what for many of us is a roller coaster day. To read each post in full, click on the author’s name.
Mother’s Day can be a minefield of disappointments, regrets, guilt, anger, and other painful feelings. Learning to work with these emotions while striving to be kind and compassionate to ourselves can help. Even when the people around you don’t fully appreciate and understand the sacrifices you make, you can appreciate yourself for your super-human patience, hard work, and unconditional love. I truly hope you will. ––Hilary Jacobs Hendel
Mother’s Day is so many things to so many people. I was blessed to have one or two Hallmark-worthy experiences. Breakfast in bed of soggy cereal and burnt toast (pro tip: a dog is very useful in these situations!), handmade gifts and cards. I cherish those memories and warm, fuzzy feelings from my emotionally healthy, attached children. I cherish them even more now that I know a far different reality exists. ––Lorraine Fuller
Being my son’s mother has taught me, no, demanded of me that I live and parent with my heart wide open. Being his mom means I had to share him with eight previous mothers and another mother after me. Yet he’s still mine, and I’m still his. Those breakfast-in-bed moments on Mother’s Day are cherished, hard-won rewards that both of us deserve. ––Neeva Carter
And also many unknowns
During their first years home, our church handed congregants flowers on Mother’s Day–one color if your mother was living, another if she was not. With no sure knowledge of their birth mothers’ fates, my children took one of each. –Laura Dennis
I hope my girls will become women of character, maybe even flawed but hard-working mothers, women and mothers like me. I know I’ll never be “Mother of the Year,” but I suppose I can be “Mother of the Day.” I can choose to tackle my weaknesses and celebrate my successes one day–one Mother’s Day–at a time. ––Anna Gosman
Do this day YOUR way
This is not a “how to” on fixing your Mother’s Day, but rather permission to do what works for your family. First, know that while things may get better, the feelings will still and always be there. Secondly, you are not alone – we’re with you! Should there be a day to commemorate all that you, the trauma mama, have done and continue to do? Heck yeah…but Mother’s Day, unfortunately, is rarely that day. Remember, though–in the end, it’s just one day. Yes, the only way out is through the middle. The good news is, you get to decide how your family will get to the other side. ––Julie Beem
Whether you officially celebrate or not, let these words be our gift of wisdom for your Mother’s Day.