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A Different Kind of Mother’s Day

May 1, 2016

grief_joy

Today is International Bereaved Mother’s Day started by CarlyMarie of Project Heal.

After two losses in 2015, my healing continues. I chose JOY as my word of the year just to see where it leads. So far, so good.

One of the things that’s helped the most is knowing we’re not alone in our loss. The isolation of grief can wreck havoc itself. Through the experiences, I’ve had trouble finding resources for women who’ve suffered loss and/or who are pregnant after loss. The communities are growing, and information is being shared, but I want to contribute by continuing to share my own experiences and documenting the resources I find. For me, days like today acknowledge this life path that some women (as many as 1 in 4) are walking. We’re not forgotten, we’re not less important and we are certainly mothers.

Thanks to the insight of CarlyMarie, we have today to celebrate, remember and honor this path that we did not choose to walk, but that we’re making our way down anyways.

I also want to acknowledge that Mother’s Day (and other holidays, especially those celebrating family connections) can be difficult for many people. For those who’ve lost, or never known, their own mother, for families experiencing infertility, for people worried they’re biological clock is ticking away, and for those in the miscarriage, stillbirth, infant and child loss camps, take these days however you need to for your own self-care. CarlyMarie’s post has a list of ways to not just survive, but celebrate these days and a list of ways to help someone else during a holiday.

Lastly, I’m learning that if the resources for women are slim in these until-recently-taboo subjects, then the resources for men are almost non-existent. CarlyMarie expressed in a Facebook comment that they’re looking at a Bereaved Father’s Day date for September (she is Australian and they celebrate Father’s Day during that month). But it’s just a good reminder to include the father in condolences, check-ins or well wishes. I can’t tell you how lovely it was when people asked how H was doing during our difficult times.

Here’s a few more links:

International Bereaved Mother’s Day on Facebook.
Why we need ‘Bereaved Mother’s Day’
CarlyMarie on Facebook.
Still Standing is an online magazine for bereaved parents and infertility. They’re also on Facebook.
Mother’s Day grief via the Huffington Post.
Pregnancy loss cards by Dr. Jessica Zucker.

*Image from @factsofgrief

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