I’ve just stopped crying…you know, that ugly cry with snot dripping down into your mouth and the scrunched up ugly face…not pretty…
I find this time of year hard. More accurately, it’s bitter sweet now I have children.
Reason being, my mother died over seven years ago, before I became a mother.
And I honestly thought that by now I would be ok with the lead up to Mother’s Day and seeing all the photos and reading the beautiful tributes to mothers and grandmothers, but you know what? Grief doesn’t work that way.
What stings the most is I will never know what it’s like to see my Mother laughing, hugging and playing with my boys. I will never get to ask her all the questions that arise only once experiencing motherhood, or to thank her for all that she did for me, which I’ve only truly understood since becoming a mother. I get her. Finally I understand my mother and I can’t share that with her. What I would give to have just one moment with her meeting my boys for the first time and sipping cups of tea sharing the deepest parts of our heart…
I truly believe that grief never leaves us. It can change, morph and hide, but it’s always there under the surface and can rear its ugly head, sometimes when we least expect it, and other times, such as Mother’s Day, when we are familiar with it.
Therefore, I want to write this self-help love letter to EVERYONE who is grieving at this time of year. To those who have lost a child, had a miscarriage, or gave birth to a stillborn angel – this is for you. For those who will never know what it’s like to hear a child call you Mummy, yet you desperately want that more than anything – this is for you. And for those who have lost their mother and would give anything to have her back in a heartbeat – this is for you.
Be kind to yourself this week. Honestly, show yourself love and compassion, and most importantly acknowledge your feelings. I can’t emphasize enough the importance of the power of acknowledgement when it comes to managing grief. You are allowed to feel pain, to cry, retreat, or have a hollow sense of feeling in your heart. You’re allowed to feel all the feelings. Acknowledging what’s going on inside of you helps to process, release tension or stress and to function in a healthier way.
When we acknowledge something, we speak it or write it out loud. We recognize our feelings and thoughts for what it is, nothing more, nothing less. Acknowledgement can be journaling or catching up with a girlfriend. Crying with your partner, or seeing a professional to help you process grief, if needs be. Friend, please do not repress it. Because when you do, it always manifests in other ways – be it impacting your health, your relationships or your self-esteem.
When we’re grieving it can be so challenging to find blessings or to be thankful for all the beauty we do have in our life. However, after a big cry and acknowledging our feelings, a beautiful step in healing is gratitude.
I believe that through gratitude we can begin to heal once more or find peace in the broken pieces of our heart.
Please note, that this is in no way diminishing your grief, rather, creating new habits of thinking that support and nourish you.
Every day I write three things I’m thankful for, and every night through deep breathing and mindfulness and prayer I focus on three things I’m grateful for. It doesn’t take away the sting of losing my mother, or the deep desire to have her in my life, but it does mean I’m less resentful towards others who do have a supportive mother, and I’m also manifesting greater joy and peace into my world.
My friend, I do not presume to know your grief or pain this Mother’s Day. And what you’re experiencing you’re allowed to experience. I just want you to know that above all else, you’re not alone in your pain. You’re allowed to feel what you’re feeling, and it’s ok to hurt.
This is my prayer for you:
That this Mother’s Day will bring a sense of peace, gratitude and beauty into the broken pieces of your heart and you will find joy in the most unexpected places.
I send you all my love
PS. Here’s two ways I can support you further in this journey: