This day is heart wrenching now because I can't go to church and lean into my husband's strong shoulder and cry while we worship. I can, on the other hand, have my coffee and stare at the very gift he gave me when Tate wasn't quite one. My first year as a mother on Mother's Day, he gave me this birdbath. I will cherish it forever.
Why all the tears? I am a blessed momma of 3 magnificent beings. Three boys who would do anything for me. Three boys who are respectful and kind, who I now lean on for strength, and who I pray over and ask for guidance to try and make them the best they can be.
I cry for my friend who never knew his mom as anything but an addict. For my friend's girls who are without her today because she took her own life. For the teenage mom we know who wasn't sure what to do and gave her baby up for a better life for the child. I weep for my friend who lost her mom to cancer and my other friend whose mom is losing her battle now. For the mom and dad who made the decision to donate their dying child's organs for another family to have life. For all of the confused students I have had over the years that haven't known the kind of mother that I feel they should. For my own stepmom, my dad's third wife, who has kept my dad sober for decades, and for my half siblings who I wish I could see more often.
Shane and I both had moms who had been through their own loss. Husbands who decided that another woman was better. I now have many friends who have gone through the same, leaving them with no husband to help celebrate them today! Cherishing even the smallest gesture of acknowledgment from their kiddos on a day like today. For these women who put on a brave face at every ballgame, every parent night, every family function alone...you didn't ask for this and you are better than you will ever think you are! Do not let it define you or make you bitter. There are men out there in this same situation and I applaud the ones I know who are killing this mom job! We have two in our family. They are there for their kids every day, without fail.
When Shane and I told his dad and his dad's wife that we were expecting, we were so very excited to take them to dinner and let them know. They were not outwardly excited and we later found out that it was because they were trying to conceive and had bad news along the way. A baby lost. We had no idea. They then had success and my sweet brother-in-law was born just 4 months after Tate. Motherhood is a battle that some have to fight harder to be a part of than others. It's a miracle.
My sister was pregnant when I was expecting Wyatt. We were going to have babies at the same time!!! She lost her babies, four in total. Why is this even a thing? Why are mothers teased in this way? Why is it that my brother and I are blessed with these perfect babies and our two sisters can't have that same maternal gift? I have a lot of questions surrounding this, and then I am reminded how much bigger God is than any of my questions.
My oldest sister told me once about a year after we lost Shane that she was at peace with no longer putting her body through the abuse of trying to conceive. She felt at peace that God had given her so many jobs here. First, her stepchildren. She is their S'mommy and has done a darn good job of raising them as her very own. They are adults now and she felt that God knew I would need her. She is my extra set of wheels to deliver children, my extra set of brains when mine is in a fog of grief, and my extra set of ears when the boys seem down or when I need to vent. She rescues me. Often! And, selfless is her middle name.
I feel for my own mother-in-law who wishes to get one more hug from her son today. One more teasing remark about how she would like him to help her do some 'moving things around' for Mother's Day. I remember one year she wanted a bench for her backyard. We spent hours at the statuary place in Skiatook with her. Trying to be patient as she didn't just pick out a bench, but many other very heavy items that he delivered back to her house and set up for her. LOL!! I can just hear his choice words now...but he would have done it again and again.
So, can we just celebrate this as a beautiful Sunday? Another day that the Lord has made for us to enjoy. That's what we will do! Moms, Stepmoms, Girlfriends helping raise little ones, Dads doing mom jobs, ex-wives, new wives, aunts, uncles, moms and grandmas in Heaven, teachers influencing and loving on kids who don't feel that love at home, pastors who are trying to say the right things this morning, moms with graduates, perfectly traditional family units, moms with military children, moms of fur babies, dads who stepped up for someone else's children, coaches who love kids unconditionally, neighbors who bless others...have the best day you can!! Enjoy the blessings from every angle! Embrace your family tree, flow chart, bullet point list, or multilevel pyramid that may at times seems like a scam. Own your dysfunction. Love on those God gave you and those he took too soon. Happy Mother's Day, and all that that implies.