Mother’s Day is a weird time for me.
I know so many people who give anything to have one more day with their mom. I know women who longed to be a mother but never could for one reason or another. I know moms that have shitty children. I know children who have shitty moms. I know moms that are showered in gifts and love and moms who are completely ignored, sometimes deserved, sometimes not. I know dads who function as both mom and dad who are overlooked on this day.
What I’ve decided is this: you don’t have to acknowledge or accept a bad mom or rotten children. We didn’t all have childhoods made up of flowers and rainbows, but how you choose to grow as an adult is ultimately your own decision. How you choose to live your life is entirely up to you. My own childhood was so-so. I have some good memories, and some not great ones. I don’t dwell on them. Because as an adult, you figure out on your own who your parents are and what kind of people they are. My dad is what I would call a good egg, and is married to my stepmother, who is also a good egg. My dad is the one who mostly raised me. My mom wasn’t around, sometimes physically and sometimes metaphorically. But the reality is she jumped ship when things got hard. It’s been a tough pill to swallow, abandonment, and I did manage to forgive her for that a long time ago. But when the abandonment carries over into adulthood, and you are left over, and over, and over again, well….what is the message she is trying to convey? I’m not worthy of her love? I’m not worthy of an apology? I’m not worthy of anything?
I don’t accept that. There’s a lesson in there, and I have learned it. I don’t know why she is the way she is, and I’m done trying to figure it out. I’ve learned how NOT to be a good mother, and carried that over instead. I never abandoned my daughter, and fought to the ends of the earth for her and still do. She knows it and appreciates it and that’s good enough for me. Some day my daughter will be a great mother, because I showed her how it’s supposed to go. You don’t get to quit being a mom, or a dad, when things are hard or you get tired. It is the hardest job in the world and if you choose to accept it, you by God better be ready to commit.
So on this Mother’s Day, I say have a wonderful day to all those great moms and grandmas I know that have put in the work, love, and dedication. I say the same to my father, and my stepmum, and my friends who take better care of their fur babies than some mothers do of their own children. I say Happy Mother’s Day to my boyfriend, who tackles the job of both mom and dad every day and never falters. And I say thank you, to my daughter who makes being her mom feel like a privilege and honor I am happy to accept.
May your Mother’s Day be filled with love, joy, and as always, grace.