Moms on a painful parenting journey don’t look forward to Mother’s Day. I know. I’ve been there. I dreaded the day. The holiday only created increased sadness because it put a spotlight on what I didn’t have. I wanted to skip the day. Let’s fastforward to Monday. I wasn’t going to receive any loving messages from my daughter much less a card or gift. What was there to celebrate?
Don’t Set Yourself Up for This
What about you? You may be sure you won’t see your child, much less have them greet you with affection, a card, or a thoughtful gift like when they were young. They’re oblivious; too self-focused for loving gestures. They may not even realize tomorrow is Mother’s Day.
What’s worse is the apathy. They’re clueless how their lack of care affects you.
Where does that leave you? Set you up for more hurt and pain, anger and resentment.
On Mother’s Day, I would long for the past. Do you? Small amounts of comfort could be found by looking at old photo albums – visual reminders of happier times. Special memories flooded my thoughts from when my daughter was little and wanted to cuddle on my lap. She adored me back then. Can you remember those moments with your son or daughter?
We Can’t Go Back
Those days are over. We can’t rewind and go back. We’re in a new place on our parenting journey—a place of grief and shattered dreams. A point of change and heartache.
Wounds have been inflicted—repeatedly. Soul-crushing disappointments have become the norm.
How did we get here, to this place of not wanting to face Mother’s Day, a day once filled with love and joy?
Soul Wounds are Difficult to Heal
Can we pray the pain away? I tried to but that didn’t work, not that I didn’t try. I sought God every day, but the hurt hung on like an old Band-Aid that refused to let go, stubbornly clinging to tender wounds . . . soul wounds.
And soul wounds are difficult to heal.
Dear brokenhearted mom, you’re grieving but there IS a way to feel better even if your child isn’t ready to change. When will that happen?
I don’t know—only God does. Until that day, be comforted in your sadness by this reminder:
Your heavenly Father knows your anguish. He sees. He understands. He cares. He’s praying for you and your child. He feels your pain and He is close.
What can you do today?
Try these 7 tips when Mother’s Day hurts:
1) Lower expectations. Better yet, don’t have any. This will prepare you for less hurt and fewer disappointments if things don’t turn out the way you hoped.
2) Change traditions. Do things differently. Start something new.
3) Make plans to do what you enjoy even if you have to do it alone or with a friend.
4) Give yourself permission to feel your feelings. If you need to express sadness, create the space to shed tears. Resentful? Vent away. Let those emotions out. Holding them in will hurt you more in the long run.
5) If you’re angry, write a letter to your child expressing everything you want to say. Hold nothing back then destroy what you wrote. Tear the paper into a million little pieces, stomp on it or burn it. This will help release the anger and might prevent you from saying something you’d regret later.
6) Shift your focus. Instead of having a pity party or getting down on yourself, think about what you can be thankful for. Do something for someone else who is in need. These are natural mood-lifters.
7) Remember how special and loved you are by God. He thinks you’re totally amazing, so amazing that He died for you.
Hurting mom, if God had a refrigerator your picture would be front and center, wrinkles, crooked teeth, gray hair and all! To Him, you’re perfect in every way. One of a kind. His unique creation. You are the beloved of Christ, beautiful, and precious in His eyes.
May this scripture comfort you:
For great is his love toward us, and the faithfulness of the LORD endures forever.
Praise the LORD (Psalms 117:2).
An uplifting book you might like is: My Cup Overflows…with the Comfort of God’s Love by Emilie Barnes.
And I hope this song will comfort you too: Tell Your Heart to Beat Again by Danny Gokey