Mother’s Day arrives at around the same time every year. It’s not like February 29th, it’s around every. single. year.
When my mom was living it was a day full of celebration. We would get her a pin corsage before church, have breakfast afterwards and then open gifts. She was mine to celebrate. My mom was more fun than I will probably ever be, and the most giving individual.
Which is why Mother’s Day is hard. I miss her.
But, it’s also no secret that holidays are tough in general after you lose someone. For me, some of these days are also coupled with the decision to not go to Church.
While I love going to church, I stay away on these particular holidays for one simple reason — they usually celebrate parents and often times do spotlights and testimonials about church member’s mothers.
It pains me to admit, but this is too hard for me to bear.
Grieving means knowing your limits, right? Well, this is one of mine.
Talking about my mom? No problem. Hearing other people talk about their living mothers? Just can’t do it.
I’ve stopped being ashamed to admit this. I did for a while, but realized, who can punish me for it? This is how I deal with these days. Everyone is different. I don’t view missing church on these days as a lack of devotion for God, but as a sign that I am handling this pain the best I can.
That’s all any of us can do.
Each year, this day has looked different for me. This year I’ve decided to keep busy. I am planning a small brunch for my family that lives nearby so that I have something to work on — a project of sorts — which will ensure I’m not secluding myself from society.
In the last two years, I’ve usually curled up on the couch with a pint (or two) of ice cream and a good movie. This year, I’ve noticed a change for me in my grief journey and I decided what was best for me was to be out and about. Keep my mind busy.
Whatever you decide to do, make sure it’s what YOU want to do.
I recently sat down with a great friend of mine who just lost her mother to cancer. (This is her first Mother’s Day without her mom.)
I sat across from her and saw the grief in her eyes.
I wanted to make sure she had something planned to remember her mom or to keep herself busy, because I know what it’s like to think you don’t need a plan and then have the grief take over. The strength she has is unbelievable and she told me that she has plans to remember her mom with some girlfriends over brunch. In that moment, I was so proud of her. She figured out what she needed — what worked best for her — and went for it.
If you’re like my friend, or like me, and have a plan — I’m proud of you. If you’re plan is to not have a plan — I’m proud of you too. No matter what, you’re doing what is best for you.
Just remember that this is a journey, and where you are now will probably not be where you’ll be next year. Take your time and get through, or enjoy, each day as best you can.