Mother’s Day has become one of the most important days of the year: You take your mom to lunch, get handmade cards from your kids, breakfast in bed — the day is special and it brings with it memories of our moms and childhoods. Especially being moms ourselves now, we realize the deep importance of our mothers, and how much they mean to us. But what if your mom is no longer around? How can you take the day to heal, rather than grieve? Here are some tips…
Are You Without Your Mom?
Since the day is so focused on moms, if you are without yours it’s even harder because everybody is taking their moms to brunch, buying flowers, asking what you’re doing, etc. It can bring up a lot of painful memories and heartache from missing her and wishing she was here. Today show contributor Dr. Gail Saltz has some good advice for those without their moms, and reminds us that OK to understand that Mother’s Day isn’t always happy. Acknowledge that you are sad and miss your mother. There’s no need to pretend it is not a melancholy time for you.
If your mom hasn’t passed away but she’s not in your life either for any reason, Mother’s Day is a great day to try and repair the relationship. Of course in many cases the relationship is just so toxic that it is better ended, but if not, Mother’s Day is a wonderful opportunity to call your mom and make amends. If you are going to make amends, Mother’s Day isn’t a good time to bring up old wounds or get into the past argument but just a good time to let your mom know you’re thinking of her, Dr. Saltz says.
How to Heal
One reader was absolutely devastated the first time she had to experience Mother’s Day without her mom. She said she used to buy flowers for her mom each year, and what was she going to do this year and every year following? She decided to buy her flowers anyway and brought them to her grave. It gave her a sense of peace knowing she could buy flowers for her mom forever, and every year on Mother’s Day continues to do the same.
Remember Your Mom
Another mom who had lost her mom suggested remembering your mom, and letting the memories settle: “Focus on as many good memories as possible. Fill your mind with them until their is no more room in your head for grief. Remember, what we think about, we bring about. If you focus on grief, you will feel nothing, but grief. We can choose what we think, no matter how hard it is to do. Remember the good times. They did, and still do exist.
Enjoy Your Family
Enjoy your children. Let them spoil you, and allow them to enjoy their mother — you! Sometimes, we can be so grief stricken with the loss of our mother, we forget we have children that need us on Mother’s Day. Get involved with them. Go out of your way to tell them wonderful stories about your mom, and your past memories of Mother’s Days with her. Tell them how wonderful it is to have them to celebrate with. Keep in mind too, your mom is always with you in your heart, soul and memories. She is only gone physically.