First, yes, I do know I’m a month and another major holiday late. If it’s any consolation, I did share these photos on BabyCenter and Facebook the night of Mother’s Day. It’s just that sometimes it takes me a while to process, and it has taken me some time to really be up to writing about Mothers Day. It was an exhausting day, definitely, but not necessarily in a bad way.
In this situation, the anxiety leading up to the day ended up being worse than the actual day. My greatest concern was that nobody would acknowledge me on this day – my first Mothers Day – and by doing so, would also not be acknowledging Calvin as my son, but rather deny his existence. That is what is most painful to me.
An Alternative to “Happy Mothers Day” and Store-Bought Cards
I could not bring myself to say the words “Happy Mothers Day,” so I did not force myself to say them. I also did not go to the store to buy cards. Instead, I took note cards, decorated them, chose a relevant passage of scripture to write in each card. It was very therapeutic for me to do this. Then Louie and I wrote our own messages in for each of the mothers in our immediate families.
A Blue Ribbon From and For Calvin
We celebrated with my family on Saturday. We surprised my mom with sushi and gave her our gift. At times it was awkward for me, because all I could think of was Calvin and how much I missed him and how much I was looking forward to our first Mothers Day together.
After looking through the photobook we had put together for my parents, my mom got up and said she needed to get something. She came back with carnations and started to hand them to my sisters, Michelle and Jeannette, who each have two kids. I found myself staring at the wood floor, trying to swallow the ache that was rising from my chest and through my throat. The she came up to me, and, through tears said, “Calvin told me to give these to you.” She extended her hand, giving me a stem of carnations that were tied with a bow made of blue ribbon – “blue for Calvin.”
To have my mom recognize me as a mother and to validate Calvin’s existence: That was healing moment for me.
To All the Mothers – and Fathers – Who Have Lost a Child
Whether it be it your only child, or one of several, or more than one, I want you know that I honor you and your losses, the life of your sweet ones, and the love that still connects you.