Today, we celebrate you, too.
Today we celebrate amazing mothers around the world. We celebrate women who have spent countless sleepless nights taking care of their children, have experienced their bodies transform in multiple ways, who have worked extra hours to ensure we wanted for nothing. We celebrate the humans that literally birthed the world.
Last year, I wrote a pretty vulnerable Letter to my Mother on my blog. In that letter, I told her that the first time that I felt that she loved me was when she sat in the bathroom with me for 8 hours when I was having my miscarriage when I was 21. A few months before I wrote that letter, I wrote a Letter to My Unborn Child where I wrote about how that experience was gruesome and traumatizing for me. Every year after my miscarriage, approximately four people send me a “Happy Mother’s Day” text message. I take this as their way of acknowledging that there was a point in time that I would have given birth to a child. They make me feel seen.
As I reflect back on what could have been, I decided to write this for other women who may have experienced a miscarriage. Losing a child is a feeling that is unexplainable. But many of us suffer in silence about the pain we still have about it. Sometimes, I still feel triggered if I’m watching a movie or TV show and someone has a miscarriage. It feels like my heart is stinging and I can feel my insides sink to my gut.
Mother’s Day brings out a range of emotions for me. Many of my friends who are mothers always post pictures of them with their children. But on Mother’s Day, the pictures mean something different. I feel something different when I see them on this day. I have a heightened admiration for them because I know the sacrifices they’ve made and I know how much they love their children. And today is the day that honors them.
Although I am happy for all the mothers with physical children, I can’t help but to think about other women like myself who have experienced miscarriages. I try to imagine if they feel forgotten about or content with not having a child. I wonder if this day triggers a range of insurmountable emotions for them like it does for me. I yearn to talk to another woman who have experienced a miscarriage just to feel like I have a support person. I want to talk about how this day makes me feel but it’s awkward bringing this up to women who have physical children. I don’t want to take away from their special moments on this day. Because of this, year after year, I go through the cycle of unexplainable emotions alone and then smile through the day if I see people.
According to the March of Dimes, between 10 and 15 percent of pregnancies of women who know their pregnant end in miscarriage. I knew I was pregnant when I had mine. This statistic also makes me think about women who have miscarriages without knowing their pregnant. How do they feel? What emotions, if any, do they have on Mother’s Day? Who consoles them if they’re triggered by something?
I feel as if open conversations about losing a child in any form is still seen as taboo. Rarely, do I see women talking about their miscarriages. When I do, it’s a celebrity, and even then it’s still few and far between. Is the silence about this topic the reason I rarely see “Happy Mother’s Day” posts on social media for women who’ve had miscarriages? Maybe that’s why I stay silent about it. Maybe that’s why approximately four people acknowledge me on this day. Maybe that’s why I feel guilty when I have these feelings because I don’t take care of a child everyday and I’m not losing sleep worrying about someone else. I’m not thinking about daycare costs and babysitters. In this case, I recognize that I feel grateful for not having that responsibility at this time in my life. God knew I wasn’t ready. I just don’t want to shut out those mixed emotions I still feel about it.
I want other women who have experienced this loss to know that you are not alone. Be honest with yourself. If you have mixed emotions today, don’t try to hide those emotions from yourself. Sit with them and reflect through them. Feel them and remember whatever you need to remember. After you’ve processed those emotions, turn your attention to the life blessings you have right now. Give thanks for the other things that are going right in your life. That will help you stay encouraged. But in case you needed to hear this…
Happy Mother’s Day.
❤ Queen T