Mother’s Day Reflections

My beautiful picture

I hope you don’t mind, but I’ve decided to get a bit personal with this post. I’ve been intending to share this part of my story for months, but to be honest I’ve been procrastinating because I know writing about it forces me to be vulnerable. There’s no recipe, no ideas and no DIY project with this post. Just me.

My beautiful picture

So why get personal? I know that I am not the only one who is feeling this way when spring rolls around. I’m sure I’m not the only one with a deep ache that reignites for weeks leading up to today. If you’ve felt that ache, you know exactly what I’m referring to.

Mother’s Day.

Please don’t misunderstand me. I am absolutely in favor of celebrating Mother’s Day – I think moms deserve much more than one day of celebration. But for many people, Mother’s Day feels like a deeper gash in an already existing wound.

My beautiful picture

For me, this year is the first year without my mom. After battling pancreatic cancer for about two years, my mom died on February 12th at about 10:15am. Last year at this time, she was struggling to continue treatment. I vividly remember strolling through the aisles of the grocery store one afternoon last spring. I walked past the greeting card section and thought I’d glance around for a Mother’s Day card. A wave of emotion crashed over me the instant I began reading Mother’s Day cards. I just lost it and practically ran out of the store. I couldn’t bear to stand there and think about buying what would likely be the last Mother’s Day card I would ever give my mom.

My beautiful picture

I don’t mean to tell a sob story. I’m not looking to complain or proclaim myself a victim – because honestly, I have no reason to do that. I had the best mom anyone could ever ask for. (I think the term “supermom” was coined as soon as my mom had kids.) I simply want to share a piece of my story because I know that I am not the only one who is grieving this Mother’s Day.

My beautiful picture

I grieve for those who never experienced a loving mother, those whose heart craves the chance to be that loving mother, those who are struggling in the midst of motherhood, those who like me have lost the most incredible of mothers. Today, I will joyfully be celebrating the wonderful mothers in my life who deserve this holiday and so much more – and I will be remembering those who quietly wish someone knew how painful this holiday really is.

My beautiful picture

The photos throughout this post are of my mom when she was about my age. I’ll be sharing more recent photos of my mom in future posts, but I’ve had so much fun over the last few months looking at old pictures that I couldn’t help but share some of them with you. Today, even though she is gone, I’m celebrating. I’m celebrating the fact that I had an incredible mother who demonstrated an unwavering faith in Jesus and loved others with the love I hope I can someday emulate. Yet in the midst of my celebration, my heart aches because I miss her more than words can express. I realize I can’t call her to wish her a “Happy Mother’s Day”. And I weep.

My beautiful picture

If it’s all you can do to escape the greeting card aisle at the grocery store when the Mother’s Day cards ominously stare you in the face, know that you’re not alone. I celebrate you and encourage you to share your story with family or friends. If you’re not sure who wants to hear you out or what to say, share your story with us. From the bottom of our hearts, we’d love to hear from you and we want you to know that we hear you, we grieve with you and we celebrate you.

My beautiful picture

This photo is of my parents on their honeymoon. They had been married nearly 48 years when my mom passed away.

To hear a bit more about the story of my mother and our journey in the midst of her cancer, click here. You’ll read the words of my dad, who has exemplified what it means to be a loving husband more than anyone I have ever known in my entire life.

For those struggling this Mother’s Day, especially due to infertility and the loss of a child, read my cousin’s story on her blog. You will truly be encouraged.

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Comments

  1. And I cry. A wonderful, vulnerable, and beautiful post. You are so right that Mothers Day can be sad as well as wonderful. I hope your words are an encouragement to so many others that are feeling sadness today. Thanks for being brave and writing this!

  2. Jen Marrs says:

    Beautiful. “supermom” I enjoyed this post very much…thank you for sharing.

  3. Marilyn says:

    What a beautiful and inspiring post! It reminds me of how lucky I am to have an amazing mother who is still with me. *hugs* to you today.

    • Thank you! :) My mom was an incredible woman and I’m so thankful for her. It’s wonderful to hear that you know what it’s like to also have an incredible mother. It’s something I definitely don’t take for granted. Thanks for your encouragement!

  4. Marilyn says:

    Beautiful post, Sarah. Thanks for sharing what a bittersweet day it is. Your mom was a wonderful woman.

  5. I get it. My mom passed away in September of breast cancer, after 2 years of sheer hell facing treatments that left her in horrible physical condition. My folks were married 49 years, similar to your folks. I get sad seeing all the trees blooming because last spring my mom mentioned being excited about seeing the trees bloom….then remembering she probably wouldn’t :(

    bless you.

    • I’m so sorry to hear about your mom. Thank you for sharing your story with us. In the midst of the grief, it’s incredibly moving to hear of another couple who has been married for 49 years – that is absolutely beautiful. I can’t tell you how much I appreciate you sharing your heart. I’m reminded by your story that I am not alone, and I hope you find comfort in that as well. xoxo

  6. nancy says:

    found your blog through Jen’s post on FB. So fun to see your mom at your age. She truly was a “supermom” and left such a wonderful legacy!

    • It’s been so fun seeing her and my dad in their 20′s. It was difficult choosing which pictures to post because there were so many fun ones! She definitely was a supermom and I’m so grateful for her! Thanks for checking out the blog! :)

  7. Vicky De Meo says:

    Sarah, Thank you for sharing your heart and all of the photos of your Mom and Dad! I am truly sorry for your pain, and I really wish your Mom was still here with us, but you KNOW that we will see her again, and there is great comfort in that!
    You know, it’s funny… some of the photos of her look just like you! I never really saw the similarities before, but I had to do a double-take on a couple of them! I’m sure that she is very proud of you, and a part of her lives on in you. That’s the best that a Mom could ask for!

    • Thank you so much for your encouraging words! I always thought I looked more like my dad until I saw these photos – it surprised me a bit when I saw the resemblance between my mom and me! It’s been fun to look through those old pictures and discover a bit more about her. I really appreciate your words and like you said, i’m so thankful that I will see her again. :)

  8. Leslie says:

    sarah! So beautiful to share your mom and dad with us in this way on this day at this particular stage of their lives and yours.

  9. Marie P.Krum says:

    Sharing your sorrow.

  10. Dawn Shpudejko says:

    Oh Sara,
    I too loved your Mom and miss her greatly. She touched so many lives at our church and Friday night group. She was such a godly woman and look forward to spending eternity with her. I can only imagine what that must have felt like to see your Mom battling with cancer but she still shone forth God’s love and kept her faith strong. Totally amazing and glorifying to God.
    I miss my Mom too even though she is still living. But she now has been living Ina nursing home for the past 4 years with dementia and aphasia due to a stroke. For the past 4 years she has never said my name although on her good days she repeats after me that she loves me. She does respond to music and even in her outbursts of crying with frustration can sing a chorus of a hymn. But I ask, ” Lord, why.? How long must she wait for her new body?”. Her life partner of 61 years, my dad, is already in glory for 2 years. It is hard for her and hard for me. So I guess I’m missing my mom and grieving for the mom who was the greatest and always there for me

    • Thank you, Dawn, for all your prayer and support. I really appreciate your encouragement and I’m thankful for you sharing your story. It pains me to hear that others are struggling as my mom did, but at the same time I’m grateful that I’m not in this struggle alone. Thank you for sharing with us and know that you are in my prayers.

  11. Andy Hayes says:

    Thank you for sharing your story and honoring your mom in such a lovely way. I lost my mom last year to cancer, and I miss her everyday, so I’m right here with you. Your mom sounds like she was pretty awesome!

    • Thank you for your kind words. I’m so sorry to hear about your mom and I appreciate you sharing a bit of your story with us. As much as I hate hearing about others’ suffering, there’s comfort in knowing I’m not the only one feeling the way I do. Thank you for your encouragement! (And yes, she was pretty awesome. :) )

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