If life begins at conception, so does motherhood.
I remember reading a post in which a woman introduced her family. She shared, “I have four children, which includes an angel-baby.” My heart melted. Her angel-baby wasn’t pictured in the family photograph near her other three kids, but spiritually, the baby was there! The child who she couldn’t kiss good night or teach new things, is still–and always will be–her baby!
On Mother’s Day, which is today, many people post beautiful pictures of the lovely women who love and inspire them. And, mothers also share pictures of the children they adore and care for. If you can no longer hold a baby who would have called (or did call) you “Mommy,” this message is for you: Acknowledge motherhood in your own way! If you have a partner or spouse, express what this day means to you. You weren’t “almost” a mother. There’s no, “I WAS a mother.” The love you felt while a baby lived inside of you, is everlasting.
Celebrating a day, without hearing the greeting “Happy Mother’s Day,” may be difficult. And, it may not be that “happy,” either.
My own mother has three angel-babies. Yesterday, was one of my brother’s birthday–he died unexpectedly, three years ago. I’ve been deep inside of my feelings for the past couple of days, but I knew that I had to write this for Mother’s Day…for my own mother, and for all mothers with angel-babies! I have friends and family, who without question, have thought about their children who can no longer be held in their arms. Everyone differs when it comes to grief, how they grieve, and for the length of time that they mourn. Unfortunately, I can’t give you any remedies for making the load of loss easier to carry. But, I would like to offer some ways to still be with your loved ones, spiritually.
M: Make memories or create ways to acknowledge your relationship–if you can emotionally handle being in the moment of remembrance.
O: Order flowers, chocolate covered strawberries, or takeout dinner on
Mother’s Day…intentionally confirming ALL that you are–including A MOTHER!
T: Talk to yourself. Self-talk and/or journaling are ways to cope with heartache–cope, not cure. There shouldn’t be any pressure from others or yourself to “move on.” During certain holidays, birthdays, or other days of significance, take a walk and talk (silently to yourself) about your emotions surrounding the loss. Fresh air can be very therapeutic, while processing everything you’ve experienced.
H: Healing rituals will not erase the hurt, but you may find it comforting to start doing something special for your baby on designated days, such as Mother’s Day. Whether you light a candle, read religious texts, listen to Miles Davis while lying down, or create a painting, the act of being present with your thoughts can be comforting.
E: Eliminate negative energy that you CAN control! Talking to people who don’t lift your spirits or scrolling through social media posts may not be ideal, if the pain becomes overwhelming. If you can mourn while still viewing all of the “Happy Mother’s Day” messages, please do so while also remembering that YOU are still a mother, too! With every tear shed, I believe that your little-one APPRECIATES the love and acknowledgment that you continue to feel for him/her.
R: Reflect, relax, and report. Like the moral of the story in the animated movie “CoCo” suggests, remembering your loves ones keep them present. Relax and be gentle with yourself, as well as with the other people who love you. Yes, you have a right to hurt and to even be angry…however, your other family members also have a right for you to report these feelings. Take some space. Grieve. Express your needs.
As women connected to the military, you possibly experienced the “passing on” of your child without family or close friends, nearby. Regardless of having emotional support from others or feeling utterly alone, the intent of this message is to tell you that you are remembered! You are not forgotten, today. I’m sending each of you thoughts of comfort on Mother’s Day, a day that is especially special for YOU.