Happy Mother’s Day! I have an amazing Mom I admire and love so much. And I love having been the Mom of my four amazing kids. And yet I don’t care for this Mother’s Day Weekend even a little. That’s because it’s not a Happy Mother’s Day for most. Not for the lady whose college girl died on a bike along country road a few months back. Not for the friend who’s son is still using drugs. Not for the friend who lost her mom to death, nor the friend who’s son still lives with her in his 40’s - will not work and won’t move out. I’d never wish a “Happy Mother’s Day” to my friend who cannot seem to get pregnant, nor to the friend who has a collection of kids, and feels guilty for the pain she feels over a recent miscarriage. No, I’d not say it to the friend who never did have kids because she was busy being Mother to the children her sister didn’t provide for - sacrificing far into her middle age. Too late for babies of her own. No, I wouldn’t wish the day on my friend who had to leave her husband, feeling like a terrible mom, unable to tell her kids the reason she tore their family apart. I could never wish a Mother’s Day Blessing on the friend whose mom knew the secret dark as she walked in and saw it all, then lied to third grade teacher and CPS when the secret bleed out. Never.
“Happy Mother’s Day”! Hummm… how about the friend who works full time, is a single mom and is ever so disgusted with herself as she can’t keep her house straight to save her life, can’t attend any school events, can’t put her kids in sports, can’t seem to give them the size of shoes they need, let alone piano lessons? Nope, not her. How about the friend whose mother went away when she was 10? Left one day and never came back. That won’t work. How about the mother whose kids hate her and tell her so because they are at the developmental stage for pushing away, and she’s at the developmental stage for holding the boundaries? She’s worn down and cries a lot. No, not her either. How about the friend who adopted kids from far away, and every day wonders if she will ever experience a calm, peaceful evening in their home as she deals with the fallout of reactive-attachment? Or the mommy whose babies are all a year apart, four of them, and looks as if she hasn’t slept three hours straight in many months? Well, maybe her, but then it might feel like salt in a wound as she has struggled with feelings of resentment at mommy duties, and hates herself for it. No, that would not be a nice thing to say to her. Should I say it to the mom who’s husband is present, but absent in every-other way, and if Mother’s Day is remembered, she is expected to make it happen? How about the friend who, anytime she sees a baby, floods with pain and shame for the abortion she had 35 years ago?
As I’m thinking about it, I’m wondering if “Happy Mother’s Day” is really akin to saying “Happy You don’t Deserve a Loving Mother Day”. “Happy Wanna-Be Day”. “Happy Shame on You Day”! “Happy Will I Die of Natural Causes, or Will the Pain of being a Mother Kill Me Off Day.” If I were to think about each of my friends and their situations, me saying “Happy Mother’s Day” is really saying “I don’t know your story, and don’t care if I hurt you.” So this year, I’m going to be saying HDLHLD (“Happy Doesn’t Love Hurt Ladies Day!”), I’m guessing each one I say it to will feel just a little bit seen. And I like that. Because each one of these women, and millions more like them are loving beautiful people who live every day of their lives searching for yet another way to love. And so this weekend I will Bless by NOT wishing them a “Happy Mother’s Day”.