Next Sunday is Mother’s Day in the United States. The barrage of radio and tv adds are upon us, the heart jewelry, the roses, the cards, the presents, all celebrating our beloved Mother on her special day. But what of us, the ones who’s mothers are gone? The ones who cannot give her that card or take her to a special brunch, what of us? Well, we celebrate too! My Mother is no longer here, she died a few years ago, I miss her everyday. Yet, instead of being sad and lonely, I choose to make my Motherless Mother’s Day a celebration of all things Mother. In order to do this, I start by quietly remembering the best things about my mom, all the funny things and how we become more and more alike. Although no longer here, I carry her with me, every day. I do not see our separation as sad, it just is. I do not wonder where she is, I just know.
These sentiments free me to remember the best of us and the best of her. I start by reviewing the gifts she gave me, here are a few… She gave me my deep sense of caring for others before self. Always try to ease suffering, (she was a nurse and was always proud that I had become a nurse too. She was very proud her grandson was going to be the third generation of nurses in the family). She taught me be kind and do the right thing even when no one is watching. To always say please and thank you and that writing a thank you card was as close to perfect manners as you could get. She gave me the belief I could reach my own potential, yet warned of marring someone else’s. She told me to save my money and be generous with my heart, She told me to be fair even when the person I was dealing with wasn’t. She believed in God and was a giving person who loved her family and friends, she protected what she believed in and fought for what she thought was just and right. We had our moments for sure, when she would tell me a little too much about raising my kids or what they should wear or about my own friends when I was younger. She hated lying and now I do too, although I try to say it differently, eliminating the word hate. I recognize the deep sadness and loss that come after the sting of a lie, just like she did. The worst thing I could do was disappoint her when I was growing up, I am sure I did a few times … those words were hard to hear …you disappointed me, yet I know when she died she was proud of me, thankfully she told me many times. In the end, We came full circle, I cared for her as she was dying of congestive heart failure. She had cared for me all my life now, my gift to her was now caring for her, just as she had done… it was our happy Mother’s day to each other. Now, she is gone, and as Mother’s Day commercials comes on, I pause and send a little message to her, “I love you Mom, I miss you and I relish our time together”. You can do the same, it’s just a thought away, so celebrate your Mom whether she is here or gone. Here’s to realizing there is no such thing as a Motherless Mother’s Day because you’re always with me… just a thought away. Happy Mother’s Day, Mom!