The celebration of Mother’s day is usually a wonderful occasion. This year, it happens to fall on the day after my wedding anniversary, just like it did on my actual wedding day. At our wedding reception in 2005, we honored my mom, my mother-in-law and also the first lady of our church, who we affectionately referred to as our “first mother” kinda like the first lady with a twist. Almost two years after our wedding, I also became a mother, making this time of year even more special and memorable for me. The following year was the last year that I was able to celebrate mother’s day with my mom. She died in December of 2008.
Since then, Mother’s Day has never been quite the same. In fact, this time of year has been very bitter sweet. I feel so blessed that I have a wonderful husband who I’ve grown to love more and more with each passing year. Celebrating our anniversary during this time definitely helps to ease the longing I feel for her. Having our amazingly loving children shower me with Mother’s Day wishes, love and kind deeds make my heart swell with joy. But while I celebrate and cherish the wonderful memories of my mother, sometimes a part of me is burdened with a feeling of emptiness and a yearning desire for her.
Yesterday was one of those days. I sat almost in tears feeling sad because I missed her. Right in the middle of my despair, my mind recalled a conversation I had just a week ago with a friend who lost her daughter. I see her from time to time and have heard her story about losing her daughter to cancer. But this particular day was a very difficult one for her. She was sobbing. As I listened to her, I felt such sorrow and compassion and remembered a few other friends who’ve lost a child. Then she said through her tears “I don’t even know what to call myself. People ask me do I have children and I don’t know what to say. Am I even a mother anymore?” I couldn’t begin to imaging the pain that she was feeling, but I remembered a term that I’ve heard another mom who lost her child use and I said to her ” Of course you’re still a mother, you’re now a mother of an angel”. She paused for a second as she wiped her tears and looked up at me. She said (somberly) ” Hmm…I’ve never thought of it like that… Thank you…thank you so much.”
Recalling this interaction in the middle of me feeling down actually comforted me also. It shifted my thoughts on the mother’s out there who won’t get a call, a card or a facebook shout out this weekend. I pray that they will also find comfort and peace during this season.
Happy Mother’s Day to ALL the mothers, soon to be mothers, mothers in memory and MOTHERS OF AN ANGEL.