On Mother’s Day for the Motherless

On Mother’s Day for the Motherless

Every year, I expect it to be different.

I fill my schedule with things to do, people to see and deadlines to hit.

I can’t exactly forget Mother’s Day entirely since there are reminders everywhere.

But I willfully forget. I push the pain from my mind, find something else to focus on. Go on with my life.

“I don’t have the time or the energy to let this knock me down again,” I say to myself, without the slightest bit of patience or self-compassion.

“Maybe this time, it doesn’t have to hurt so much.”

Or: “I know — this year, I’ll make the day about me. I will celebrate myself.”

It all seems so hopeful; so possible.

Only, there’s a catch: my body knows and my subconscious knows.

The day creeps closer, and it feels like I’ve got massive concrete blocks tied to my body and glued to my feet. Every step feels impossible, and every breath is a labor.

I can’t concentrate. I’m agitated. I lack joy. I have fitful, nightmarish sleep and can never seem figure out why. Even when the answer is staring me in my face.

I banished this hurt from my life! How dare it creep up on me?

I always end up where I tried not to be; stuck in my bed harboring a quiet resentment for everyone on earth who doesn’t feel this way.

I’m exhausted like I’ve run twenty marathons. But all I’ve really done is my usual: write, go to treatment, write, workout, write.

Why do I find myself perpetually surprised by this slow motion state, even though the same thing happens every year?

I must learn, all over again, that I can’t outrun grief.

Grief doesn’t discriminate. It doesn’t care if I don’t have time or can’t be bothered or just really need to get some stuff done.

Grief laughs at my plans and proclamations.

Grief doesn’t let me call the shots. Like an unruly storm, it comes when it pleases, drowns me, and leaves as mysteriously as it rolled in.

The more I resist it, the stronger it becomes.

If I allow it, or even invite it, will it be easier? Will I be more prepared for its wrath?

I don’t know. All I know for sure is that grief comes for me either way; whether I’m on my toes and ready to dance, or pushing it back, hoping I can hold on for just one more day.

Perhaps it is time I start accepting its steady rhythm in my life.

Besides, there is comfort in knowing that come Monday, it will blow back out to sea as wordlessly as it came.

And there will always be another Monday, after all.

One Reply to “On Mother’s Day for the Motherless”

  1. Grieving for something or someone lost to us in the tangible or the flesh is sad. IT’s hard to escape, and it does creep in at the most inopportune times. Certain holidays don’t help, but they aren’t intentionally crippling. I suspect if we do learn to accept that which we can not change [the emotion of sadness], we might get through it much quicker, or even give it our permission to dissipate, and eventually…

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