mothers day
Me, my mother and my brother in 1992.

The majority of us are excited to celebrate on Mother’s Day. Whether you can’t get enough of mom, or she drives you crazy, Mother’s Day is a time to focus on the woman who brought you into this world.

I was lucky enough to have the world’s most dedicated mother for 16 years. She knew how to light up a room, light up my face, and light up the world. She was passionate about everything and everyone she loved, including me.

I lost my mother for as long as I’ve known her. She passed away when I was 16, which is 16 years ago. Taken by mental illness that still surrounds and haunts me to this day, I think about her nonstop, especially on birthdays, anniversaries and, most of all, Mother’s Day.

Since I was 17, Mother’s Day has been a day I tried to forget. It was too hard to think about, so if I just forgot it existed, perhaps the pain would subside a bit. However, now that I’m a mom myself, I can’t escape the holiday. People wish me a Happy Mother’s Day, and I can’t accept it. Yes, I’m a mother, but I’m so new at it. It’s only been three years. The real person who deserves those words is my mother, but she’s not here to hear them.

I know there are other motherless women and men out there like me. Some of us have lost our mothers recently as they become elderly, while others haven’t seen their mothers in years, or ever. No matter how new or old of a motherless experience, it still hurts. It still creates a flood of emotions on Mother’s Day that leaves happiness, pride, hugs, kisses and smiles off the list.

There are ways to make the most of this day, because there are many people in our lives who are mothers, and we care about them very much. Our mothers may be gone, but they wouldn’t want us to cry about it. And so, I think about how to make the most of this day, because not only do those around me deserve to be happy today, but so do I.

Face the emotions

I recently read an article called A Letter to the Motherless on Mother’s Day. If you’re motherless, whether you’re a man or woman, you must read this. I promise you will read it through a cloudy haze of tears, that will cause you to re-read it a number of times to actually get through the piece. After a few deep breaths, you’ll feel better. The words are so true that they cut like a knife. However, it feels good to face the emotions, and experience someone else with the same emotional challenge.

Write about it

We all have our own outlets, and for me, it’s writing. If something is eating at me, whether it’s hilarious or extremely sad, I have to write about it. It could be in the form of a joke on Facebook, or a full blog post like this one. It could even be a private diary entry. No matter what, writing about your emotions gets it out of your head. It helps you make sense of it all, since you have to turn it into words.

If you’re not a writer, try dictating your feelings, or talk it out with someone you know. Heck, even Siri can take it.

Smile and enjoy the day

Now that you’ve faced your emotions, it’s time to enjoy the day. Celebrate someone you love on this special day. It could be a friend experiencing mommyhood for the first time, your sister and her furbabies, your mother in law, or in my case, celebrate you.

Being a mom is a special opportunity that doesn’t come easy. We sometimes take it for granted, and today is a day to celebrate. After all, that’s all our moms ever wanted.


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