So, Mother’s Day is coming and I cannot celebrate.  I told my mom, not to be hurt please, or upset. I love her and appreciate, but I cannot celebrate a day, when half of me is missing.

I am shattered.  My heart is in 1000 pieces and I know my life will never be the same.  I used to think – when Olivia had cancer – and should she die, I could be at peace because I knew she would be with Jesus and someday I would see her again.  The loss of Olivia now, leaves me with an entirely different perspective.  I am a mom.  Yet, I have no child.  Well, I have a child, but she is my Prodigal Daughter for the moment, and living life on her own, without any contact with me.  Not by my choice, mind you.  So, that leaves me in a quandry. One I do not wish to celebrate.

Two of my bestest friends have lost their moms.  One recently, one a few years ago.  I wonder, how do they celebrate Mother’s Day.  Yes, they have children, and their children will celebrate them, but how painful to have a mom, know she is in heaven, yet not be able to spend the day with her.  It leaves me to wonder, will Olivia realize it’s Mother’s Day, and does she care she has a mom, who loves her, misses her and would love to celebrate in the old way I love to celebrate, at the zoo.  She certainly skipped my birthday without a peep, so i imagine this day will be the same.

I have an acquaintance who has a Prodigal Son.  He is off living life with girlfriend and girlfriend’s family and his own son, and only seems to call mom during times of trouble for himself.  He basically acts like his mom is the root of all evil and refuses to acknowledges she lives.  But, let him find himself in a financial quandry, and she is suddenly a hero.  One of her friends tells her, “you love the one’s who show you love too”.  While I most certainly agree with that statement, it still leaves a huge hole in your heart.

Nothing, and I do mean nothing, and no one, and yes, I do mean NO ONE, can take the place of my child.  I am not the perfect parent.  Never have been.  I too was raised by a non-perfect mom, who was also raised by a non-perfect mom, who was also raised by a non-perfect mom, and so the story goes all the way back to the days of Eve, Cain and Able.  I wonder if Cain and Able blamed their mom for their problems?  I don’t blame my mom for my problems.  I see where her mistakes played into what mistakes I didn’t want to make, and if I did make the same one’s she did, well, I ask for forgiveness.  I have both been on the receiving end of “my mom is so great” and now at the end of “my mom is horrible, look at how dysfunctional she made me”.  I can see where one who thinks like a child would think only the MOM is to blame, but doesn’t it take TWO to make a relationship?

I remember being an 18 – 19 year old girl myself and having my first real boyfriend and thinking my parents were too controlling or “not understanding” anything about my life, but I can honestly say I have never had a time in my life when I wished my parents would go away and wanted to never speak to them again.  I guess that’s what makes my daughter and I so completely different.  Which I always knew we were different, of course we are, our life experiences are completely different.  One certainly isn’t more right or more deserving.  One certainly isn’t above taking blame for failure.

So, I have been thinking how do I describe how I feel to people who mean well by saying “what are you doing for mother’s day?  Well, I can’t explain it – I am a mom.  But I do not have any contact with my child, so am I really still a mom?  If your child doesn’t want you for a mom, does that still make you a mom?  What’s the word for a parent who has been completely abandoned by a child?  If a parent leaves their child, they are an orphan.  If you don’t have contact with your child for so long, the court’s can take away all your rights.  Now, I know, at 19 almost 20, she isn’t a child, she is a young adult – and trying to figure out life, and clearly wants me to realize she doesn’t need me, doesn’t want me, and clearly thinks love is about “being mad, staying mad and I can do what I want, and punish you”.  Okay.  But what does that make the parent you left?

So, as I come upon this weekend and cannot stop thinking about my place in the world now, I just can’t come up with words to describe how I feel.  I wish I would have made my last Mother’s Day way more special so I would have that memory to pull me through.  I have almost all the mother-daughter pictures ever taken of us on my desk at work.  Thinking if I pray hard enough, put all my faith in what used to be, maybe somehow, some way, it’ll come around again.  I will be back to the me I used to be….

Then, tonight at the gym, reading the book of Jeremiah, this song came on:  Tell Your Heart to Beat Again…by Danny Gokey.

“Shattered, like you’ve never been before, the life you knew in a 1000 pieces on the floor, and words fall short in times like these when this world drives you to your knees….you think you’re never gonna get back to the you that used to be…

Tell your heart to beat again, close you eyes and breathe it in.  Let the shadows fall away, step into the light of grace, yesterday’s a closing door, you don’t live there anymore.  Say goodbye to where you’ve been, and tell your heart to beat again.

Beginning, just let that word wash over you.  It’s alright now, love’s healing hands have pulled you through.  So get back up, take step one, leave the darkness, feel the sun, cause your story’s far from over.  And your journey’s just begun.

Let every heartbreak and every scar, be a picture that reminds you who has carried you this far.  ‘Cause love sees farther than you ever could, in this moment heaven’s working everything for your good. ”

Tell your heart to beat again.

by David Gokey

Totally me.  I am shattered.  My heart broke the day she left and has continued to break with every minute of time apart from her.  I don’t live in the house of “mom” anymore, that door was slammed shut, a and not by my choice.  I do need to say goodbye to the mom side and tell my heart it is okay to beat.  This is a new beginning.  I’ve never been alone.  Never been on my own.  This is an entirely new journey for me, and the biggest compliment about this new journey was given to me the other day when someone I truly admire told me, that “instead of your Job story tearing you away from God, you’ve drawn closer”.  What a compliment.  And…he was right.  I’ve read more religious books and prayed and prayed and prayed and searched and sought for answers.  Not wordly answers, but spiritual answers.  And, it’s true, I have very loving hands carrying me through, I’ve been driven to my knees, words didn’t help, I stepped into God’s light and grace, and slowly, ever so slowly, my heart has started to beat again.

Beginning.  I am getting back up, trying to leave my dark days behind.  Just because I am no longer a “mom” doesn’t mean I am not still a living, breathing being.  My story isn’t over.  My heart can beat again.  Loudly.  And no – I will never be who I once was.  I’ll never get back to the ME I was before Prodigal Daughter, but it’s okay.  When the Prodigal comes home, it will be better then it’s ever been.  I can say goodbye to where I’ve been and leave those 1000 pieces of my heart on the floor, tell my heart to beat, beat, beat, step into the light of Grace, my story is far from over.  This is a new journey.  One I am not stepping into alone.  Every heart break, every one of my scars, is totally a picture of who is carrying me.  Love does see farther.  Heaven is working for my good.  I just need to close my eyes, beathe in His love, His Mercy, His Grace, let God continue to be the reason my heart beats….and it will…it willl…it will…my heart will continue to beat, and to and love will continue to carry me….a new beginning…..

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