A week ago, emotions ran wild for so many people. I came to understand the pain filled reality of the hearts that time hasn't healed. Mother's Day was much different this year than it was almost five years ago. I felt the pain of the young children who's mother's are no longer here. She participated in the arts and crafts with the rest of her class with no mother to hand her gift to then receive the hug accompanied by a smile of affirmation. My faced became blank as I felt the energy transfer of the adult who tried to mask their pain due to the loss of their mother. Knots filled my stomach as I could now relate to the feeling of losing a child that was born too early.
In another way, on the same day, I allowed for others to make me feel less than. There was no love given to me from the men who helped me to create my babies other than a text that read "Happy Mother's Day" and a phone-call asking if my daughter could go along with him (her dad) and his mother (her grandmother) and whoever else for mother's day. Usually I don't let things bother me. Especially things that are trivial. But wasn't this day created by man to celebrate all mothers? Am I not a mother as well? Does this day not apply to me? For the men in my life, it didn't apply to me. I felt belittled, insignificant, lonely, hurt and sad.
It was hard for me to watch husbands cherish their wives, boyfriends cherish their girlfriends and soon-to-be mommies carrying their babies to term anxiously counting down the days while at the same time being showered with "Happy Mother's Day" salutations that I would not be receiving. It was hard seeing the baby-mama get a brand new car from her baby-daddy even though they aren't together. It was difficult to see the level of respect and honor these men had for the women who birthed their children and not know what that feels like for myself. Having to be in that moment alone inside my head, in silence, was difficult. I imagined for things to be different on mother's day. I expected nothing and something at the same time. With five men standing in my life; my dad, my brother, my brother-in-law and the two men I mentioned before surely someone would "get it". Nothing.
By choice, I let everything in my life serve as a window of opportunity to learn and grow. This experience wasn't any different. I learned to accept responsibility for the part I played in choosing the men I had allowed to love me to this place of hurt and abandonment. I also chose to release that thought once I'd accepted it. I learned to allow myself to be human in whatever feelings that I may find myself having. Have those feelings. Be in that moment and think. Let what's real visit your mind and heart then give yourself permission to be free. I didn't try to suppress what I was feeling. I didn't lash out onsocial media. I chose not to acknowledge mother's day publicly at all. Why? Not because I'm bitter. Not for any reason at all. I'm fortunate to have my mother still here with me. I chose to give her the love and appreciation that I was missing. I chose to not allow her to feel the emotions that I had permeating through my entire being. Instead, I chose gratitude. I chose my daughter. I chose self-love and self-care. I realized that my worth is not determined by some man-made pagan holiday. The only badge of honor I needed was the one I gave to myself.
With full intent, next Mother's Day wont be celebrated either because it isn't necessary for my life. I realize and fully accept that my motherhood journey isn't going to look like anyone else's and that's okay. A beautiful young woman once spoke to me and said,
"Stop personalizing what people do to you. If they aren't in your life, it's because God didn't want them to be.",
and it was in that moment that I connected the dots that were still standing alone on this journey of self-love and self-evaluation. By choice I celebrate mothers day every day that I am given the opportunity to parent the little girl that God has trusted me with. I am a mother each day that she calls me "mommy". This truth that I live can not be condensed into one day of celebration. Motherhood for me can not be minimized.