Let’s get this straight. I am not a Hallmark Holiday kind of girl. I’m the girl who tells her boyfriend not to buy her anything for Valentines day and actually means it. I believe that you should be kind to the people in your lives on a consistent basis and therefore not need a national holiday to remind you to do this.
Mothers day… as it has never been a holiday about me, it’s not one that I have spent my life completely ignoring. I traditionally bought my Mother a card and a little something to mark the day as I’m sure most of you did also.
I was raised in the UK and they celebrate Mothers day in March. When I moved to the USA and my Mum was still in England I could never remember the day and the May date just seemed silly to us and thus the expectation dropped and we agreed to stop bothering with it altogether. That said I feel that there is a twinge of disappointment when I fail to deliver. I don’t think that she realized that my being allowed to forget it for her enabled me to move past the pain I felt of it not being a celebration for me too. Selfish I know but infertility can make you feel this way.
Of all the Hallmark Holidays I feel that this can be the most painful for so many people for so many reasons. Maybe you’ve lost your Mother, never had a Mother or long to be a Mother. It’s so much easier to let the day slip past without commemoration than to wade through the aisles of cards with their sentimental messages. I get it.
Now I am on the other side. I am a Mother (finally!) and I still don’t feel the urge to dash out and purchase the most gigantic floral arrangement that money can buy. I do however have a huge appreciation for my own Mum and the things that she has done that have allowed me to fulfill my dream of being a Mother.
As a Single Mother by Choice I had to do a lot of planning before taking the leap and having a child on my own. I work an atypical schedule. Daycare isn’t an option as I don’t start work until 4pm. Paying a babysitter would have been more of a strain on my finances than I could have handled. My Mother said she would gladly watch the baby whilst I worked. Godsend!
I had done 2 rounds of IVF and experienced a miscarriage when we put my Mothers house on the market and started looking for suitable properties. My Mother also cares for her elderly Father which added another dimension into our house hunting process.
Finally we found the perfect house. A place with a separate in-law apartment that could be converted into a 2 bedroom house. We purchased it, did a huge renovation and 3 months later I was at last pregnant with my son.
It had been a huge leap of faith. I knew that the living arrangement wouldn’t suit me if I were to remain childless. I was at a point where I didn’t believe I would ever have a child of my own. Before we bought the house, I was maxxed out on loans. Luckily for me, my debts were all rolled into the new mortgage. This enabled me to take out another loan to pay for that last, final treatment (the one that worked!)
If it weren’t for my Mothers own sacrifices to care for her elderly Father and to offer to care for my (at the time) future child, I don’t know that I would have ever been able to do this on my own. I say that I would have found a way – but would I? I guess I’ll never know.
Mothers day has a different meaning now and I’ve started buying cards again, I’m even going to buy flowers and a little gift from my son so my Mum feels truly appreciated. Without her, there would be no us.
As for me? I have everything I need. Smiles and giggles are the perfect gift from my little guy this Mothers day.
So to all of you, especially those of you who are struggling, I send you light and hope and wish you a Happy day.