I get the weirdest feeling as I see Mother’s Day approaching on the calendar. I thought that once we finally had our own babies cuddled up in our arms that the ache I have in my heart around this time of year would fade – but oddly enough, it hasn’t.
I thought I would be on “the other side” – free of all the thoughts that used to whirl around in my brain as Mother’s Day neared.
But here I am… arms and heart full with two beautiful year-old boys… and still I can’t shake it.
I thought maybe last year I still felt this way because being a mom was so new to me. After all, last Mother’s Day our boys were only just shy of 2 months old. I was just dipping my toes into the world of motherhood and to be honest, felt like a bit of an imposter. Who was I to deserve all of this when so many women I know have gone through SO much more and still don’t have their babies with them?
This time of year especially – my thoughts constantly go back to those feelings I had during our 6 year struggle to get pregnant. I can remember the emptiness I felt and how I’d bounce from hopeful to convinced I was pregnant to disbelief to anger to acceptance every single month, only to start again the next. Those feelings only grew in magnitude as we officially started fertility treatments. Now we weren’t just throwing spaghetti at the wall hoping it would stick each month – we had tests and needles… doctors, ultrasounds, and blood work that was supposed to be leading us down the right path! So when another year went by and my arms were still empty – it became difficult to find the hope again at the start of each new cycle. And when we lost our first baby after finally, finally, seeing that positive sign on a pregnancy test – I wasn’t sure at first if I could pick back up and start again.
You’d think that now that I’m on the other side – these memories would have faded and I would have moved on. My dreams came true, right? Yet why does this linger?
Part of it I guess is that I really feel like every day is Mother’s Day with my boys, so having one specific day to celebrate seems odd (like Valentine’s Day is for couples, I suppose… you should show your love every day, right?). I know that may sound super corny and silly, but truly every day I feel so blessed and overwhelmed by the love I feel from and for Micah and Gabriel that I get choked up way more often than I ever mention or admit to.
And so as this day approaches on the calendar it feels mostly like any other day to me around here… but that is tempered with the knowledge that for so many women who are still aching to be moms – it is NOT just any other day for them. It is heartbreaking.
So many women suffer through these struggles in silence and so they truly feel invisible on Mother’s Day. (I know I did before we made our struggles known.) Their families and friends may not know that their 5th attempt at IVF failed last week, or that they finally got pregnant but are still waiting for the baby to miscarry naturally after not being able to find a heartbeat during their first ultrasound, or that another adoption match fell through… or that their 3rd IUI resulted in a chemical pregnancy and they were waiting to start yet another round of tests after a meeting with their doctor.
I know so many women feel alone on this day, but I want each of you to know – you. are. not. alone.
I see you.
I feel your pain.
And even after we have our miracles… my heart still aches on this weekend because you do not yet have yours.
I also want you to know something… and this is important:
You are already a mother.
You may shake your head and disagree, I know I did back then too. But YOU ARE. You have the heart of a mother and the struggle you are in right now has already shown your future babies how much you are willing to go through to bring them to you. All of these needle pricks, tests, never ending appointments, and hormones making you feel like a crazy person… all of it is for them… your babies. They are waiting on you to continue this journey, against all odds – so please, please continue on.
I promise you that while it may not be easy, it will be worth it.
So on this weekend, please show yourself the same grace and kindness you so often show to others. Let yourself feel how you feel without guilt. And know that your babies are out there – they are just waiting for the perfect time to meet you. And when that time comes – you will be an even more patient, loving, humbled, and amazing mama than you ever may have been if you hadn’t gone through this journey to your family. xoxo
*Photos by the ever amazing, Simply by Suzy.