Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Grief: Mother's Day Isn't Always Easy, but Maybe...

I'm lucky.  I have a lovely daughter and granddaughter.  My daughter and I laugh together and fight together but we have had a chance to improve our relationship over the years.  I have a granddaughter because my daughter is alive and gave me one.  I can't begin to understand what Mother's Day feels like when you have a child die - a child with you in spirit - but locked in time and not with you in their physical body.  My Mother's Day is Valentine's Day.  Advertisements everywhere.  Things to buy in every store.  I usually deal with Valentine's Day by running and hiding.

I had a thought though.  If you got and get joy from being a mother maybe Mother's Day could be a memorial to that.  There really is no hiding.  It seems to seek you out every where you go.  What if this Mother's Day you said hello to the pain and spent time with it.  But...what if you also asked the pain to make room for the joy.  What if when you heard or saw the word Mother you were overcome with memories of so many special moments you shared with your son and/or daughter that you found yourself smiling.  What if you rolled your memories backward to when they were alive and you pictured their happy face and their eyes looking at you with love?  What if you remembered all the times you laughed together?

Can you do it?  Can you try?  Is it possible to take a day that seems full of other people celebrating with their children not understanding that you are so lonely missing your child and have it fill up with happiness?  Is it possible to take a day that reminds you of all the experiences you were cheated out of and make your own kind of celebration honoring yourself as a mother?  Is it possible to make room for both joy and sadness, anger and gratitude.  Even if you had a difficult relationship with your child - if there is love...   So many people have said to me how lucky I was to be Artie's love and have him be mine.  So many people never find that.  So many people want children and can't have them - and you did.  Even if not for long enough.  It is never long enough.

I am writing this not knowing if you now think I have lost all understanding.  I may be hiding under the covers on Valentine's Day.  I'll tell you something interesting, though.  I'm going on a cruise with my daughter and granddaughter in July.  By pure accident we are leaving on the anniversary of Artie's death.  My daughter asked me how I will be.  I said, "I don't know."  I don't know is a great leap.  For three years I have been certain that I will be miserable.  Maybe I don't have to be.  Maybe I can find some time during that day to be sad but spend the rest of the time appreciating what there is to appreciate.

This is a very strange post for me.  It puts out the possibility of turning a day that is difficult for so many reasons - into something that may have darkness but also shines with the brightness of the love a mother has for her child.  That the brightness of the love a mother has for her child can triumph even over death.  xo

1 comment:

  1. Rosie O'Donnell just praised your blog on Twitter. I agree, this is wonderful work.