Filush-Glaze: Mother’s Day mourning
By Jenny Filush-Glaze
So yes, Mother’s Day was celebrated a few days ago and yet I think it would be irresponsible of me if I didn’t address some of the grief that is often overlooked on a day meant to celebrate moms.
You see, not everyone is comforted by well wishes and outspoken words of “Have a Happy Mother’s Day”, and not only are they not comforted, but they are also inundated with many layers of loss that many never even stop to consider. However, it is like everything else in the bereavement world, sometimes we are saying and doing the right things, while at other times we are way off the mark (which makes supporting the bereaved so difficult).
Here’s the deal: I would never wish to encourage you to stop acknowledging Mother’s Day to the women around you, however, it would be great if we could stop and think about all of the ways that people are suffering or enduring tremendous pain on this day as a result of some kind of loss. Some of those losses include the following: the death of a child (to include a miscarriage), unresolved emotional distress or distance in a relationship, absenteeism, and/or someone who has experienced the death of their mom. Of course there are a host of many others, but I just felt called to bring to everyone’s attention that Mother’s Day is not always filled with happiness and celebration.
Additionally, we must also address the lack of understanding that some have towards others who find facing Mother’s Day difficult for them. Words spoken such as “But you’re a mom too, so you should celebrate you” often fall on deaf ears and can create shame and guilt for not wanting to acknowledge or participate in activities that others feel that you should be doing. In all fairness, a holiday designated to honor moms everywhere is a beautiful day for many — some choosing to gather together to remember lost loved ones and work together on healing.
So please, try to be mindful of one another and never make an assumption that everyone is happy to celebrate this holiday. And, even though Sunday has already passed, but you know someone that this may pertain to, an acknowledgment of how difficult this time must have been for them would offer a salve that could perform some healing on even the gravest of wounds. Yes, it is just “a day”, but it is one that ushers in many unexpected feelings that we are often unprepared for, so reach out with kindness and let them know that you acknowledge their loss and that you are there to perhaps comfort and ease their pain.
Is there a better gift than that?