This Mother’s Day my heart was open to a world I’ve never known before. A world where Mother’s Day isn’t necessarily joy filled, happy, and fun. A world where a day of celebration can instead be a day of heartache. A day of sorrow. A day that prods the weeping heart to remember all that we have lost or stabs reminders at unfilled dreams and desires.
This Mother’s Day I prayed all day for women who have lost children. For the women who have lost their first born child in the same way I lost Gideon, only they don’t have other children yet to distract the pain. For the women who feel like Mother’s Day is nothing more than a vivid reminder of all that they don’t have. Dreams of being married. Dreams of getting pregnant. Dreams of staying pregnant.
The pain is all too great.
I cannot take the pain away. I don’t even have the power to dull my own pain, and at the kitchen table I sobbed as I put on my Mother’s Day necklace. A necklace that had four names, four precious and special and unique names. Four names that remind me of all the many ways I am blessed. Four names that remind me that one name is missing from the table.
No, I can’t dull the pain. But I can pray and cry and I can fight for the truth that God continues to whisper to my bleeding heart. The truth that yes, you ARE a mommy, a Mommy to the children who are here and a Mommy to the child who is not. Motherhood may look different, but it is not gone. I Mother Gideon with all my might. I mother him with my tears. I mother him when I tell people about him and every time I wear blue. I mother him by helping his memory to live on. I mother him every time I hold his blanket and everytime I kiss his picture. I mother him when I am proud to tell people about his life and I mother him every time I write about him. Yes, my motherhood journey with him is different but it is… just… as… real.
God gently whispers His hope into a world full of unrealized dreams. Dreams that we powerfully, with all our being want so badly to come true. Mother’s Day represents those dreams to so many, and today I pray that just for one more day you will trust your Heavenly Father with those dreams. Just one day at a time constantly re-handing those dreams over to the one who died so you can live…so His will can be done. Despite all our haves and don’t haves. Despite all the pain.
No, I cannot take the pain away. But through God’s Words that have breathed perfect life into my aching soul…I can promise you, His will is not easier but it is better.
One thing that continued to give me hope over these past couple of months is the promise that we will see God in the land of the living. Yes, there is no denying the hope of heaven. That no matter what happens in our lives we will live eternally blissful with those whom we love. But there also needs to be hope in the midst of dire straits. A lost child, miscarriages, infertility, singleness…these are all things brought glaringly to the surface this past Sunday and I want to believe that there is hope now in the midst of these pains. I believe in the hope that God will redeem us in each one of these circumstances. That our tears will not be wasted. That even in the middle of more pain than it seems we can bear, that there will be blessing again. There will be. Dear friend, there will be.
Why? How do we know? Because…
“The Lord is my shepherd, I lack nothing.
He makes me lie down in green pastures,
he leads me beside quiet waters,
he refreshes my soul.
He guides me along the right paths
for his name’s sake.
Even though I walk
through the darkest valley,[a]
I will fear no evil,
for you are with me;
your rod and your staff,
they comfort me.”