I found myself lying awake at 4:30 in the morning, Baby Girl couldn’t find her Sassy in her big bed, just one of the 3 times I have been up this night – once to comfort and pray with Sissy after her scary dream and another just in response to mid-night cries.
I never dreamed this would be my life. If I’m honest, I don’t think I ever dreamed at all. Sure I had plans, and they involved not having children… so I can’t help but think back to how I got here, awake at 4:30 in the morning on Mother’s Day weekend.
This wasn’t ever my dream.
I remember that special day when mothers are invited to stand and we honor the women that have poured into our lives, made sacrifices day after day and been the one cheering us on every step of the way. I adore my mom and it has been a joy to celebrate her every year.
As I think about this Mother’s Day my heart feels such a tension that in some ways I wish we could skip this day. I am all for honoring what is honorable, don’t get me wrong. And Mothers, you are worth honoring. But I can’t help but feel all the pain that comes with this day.
To the friends that have longed to be called mommy, have prayed for the positive pregnancy test or wept over the life that was lost…. I see you. Your heart is good. Your desires are right. I wish there were words I could type that could touch that pain of desire not yet met. It’s ok if you don’t want to come out today. It’s ok for you to be disappointed, life isn’t fair. Your pain is real.
To you friend, who lost your own mom, even with all her imperfections, you still feel the deep loss. I see you. I long for you to experience comfort and peace this day as we honor our mothers. I pray you are able to remember the good things and celebrate her life. There is no softening your loss. Your pain is real.
To the friends that never experienced what a mother should be, loving, nurturing, protecting and fighting for you… I pray God touches that deep place in your heart that longed for what was rightfully yours… but was stolen for whatever reason. Your pain is real.
To the first mommy of my little girls, I see you. I see you every day when I look in their deep brown eyes. I see you in the passion they have for life and fierceness in their fight. I hear you in their laughter that comes from the bottom of their belly – that you can’t help but join because it is so contagious. This is you mommy. You are all over them. And some days, I feel guilty.
I know I shouldn’t feel guilty. But I do. I feel guilty for getting to adore these beautiful girls, watching every new milestone, tucking them in at night and breathing a sigh of relief when they fall into sleep. This wasn’t my dream.
It is everything I never knew I ever wanted.
They are stunning. Even on the messy days, they take my breath away. We are covered with attention everywhere we go. I often feel like I need to admit they aren’t even mine. We’re the lucky ones here. I don’t know what I did to deserve this… they call me mommy.
When people ask me if I have children, I always say, “sort-of”. I am stepping in to more confidence that I can say yes… but there’s always an explanation that follows. I can’t fully own this glory that doesn’t feel like mine to own.
I have to be honest with you when I say, Mother’s Day is hard for me… it doesn’t feel fair. It was much easier when I just got to celebrate all the wonderful mothers around me. When I think of myself as a mother I think of all the things I don’t get right… the nights I have regretted what I spoke, or how I reacted. I think of all the other people that could do a better job than me. I feel so undeserving of the honor of mother.
But I imagine there are very few of us that wake up thinking “I’ve got this mother thing down!” I have to give myself grace. Maybe Mother’s Day is not about honoring perfection but honoring the women that haven’t given up. The ones that get up day after day and start over and face this life that we’ve chosen, or been given or are waiting to experience. The key is showing up.
Show up for whatever season God has you in. Never stop showing up.
That’s what I’m doing. I don’t know how long God is giving me to be called mommy by these sweet girls, but I will keep showing up. In the middle of the night, at the end of the day, when they wake up way before I’m ready…. I’ll be there.
He’s giving me dreams. I dream of being mommy forever, and maybe one day I’ll stand up on Mother’s Day, fully owning that honor. For you friends that struggle with this day, I feel your pain… and it’s ok. Just don’t stop showing up. And if you need to wait til Monday…. I’m ok with that.