When Mother’s Day is Hard

Written by Peggy Burns, LPC

Mother’s Day is normally a beautiful day to celebrate a very important person in our lives. I know I remember making all sorts of fun things for my Mom in elementary school and I thought that I bet she will be surprised! Little did I know that my five older brothers and sisters probably did the same at that age. Ah, the memories.

What happens to those memories when your mother passes away? Are they still happy places or is it hard to think about? I know for me the first few years after my Mom died I did not want to celebrate Mother’s Day. But I knew I had to celebrate it because I was a Mother.  I did not want to disappoint my daughters who I know were busy making fun things for me in school.

It was a very difficult transition. I think about how hard it was to know that I could not ask my Mom a question or get her advice or get a recipe that she had that I wanted to learn how to make. Those questions never end. A mother defines who we are, where we came from and who we want to be.

Some of you may be experiencing a recent loss of your Mom and still feel the pain and sadness. One of the things I liked to do was to do something my Mom liked to do. If it is gardening, perhaps you can plant a few flowers or take a walk in the arboretum. My Mom loved baseball so if a game is on that day, I like to watch it and it makes me feel closer to her. Whatever it is that can bring you closer to those good feelings that day, go with that.

Mother’s Day can also be difficult when there is a loss of a daughter or son.  The feelings of love and loss for them on this day is heartbreaking. It is a day to celebrate our children too and the joy that they bring us and the joy that we feel being a Mom. It can be a complicated day especially when you have other children and want to share in the joy but they know that you are carrying a sadness.  Again, I would say that celebrating all your children is important and talking about the one you lost and all the memories you have of celebrating together as a family. I know that sometimes it may be hard to start the conversation or bring up her or his name but everyone is thinking the same thing. Once you break the ice, there is a sigh of relief and then the talking, reminiscing and funny stories can start to happen.

Mother’s day is a day of honor and love. Let’s treat it as a day of rejoicing her presence in our lives and the love in our hearts.


*Photo by Matt Hoffman on Unsplash


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