Mother's Day reStored!
Can I be real with you? I am not a big fan of Mother’s day – it creates feels and emotions I don’t want to deal with. I have a very short fuse in the days leading up to the holiday. I cry at the most irrational things, and sometimes can’t even put a finger on why I am led to tears. Years of buried hurts try to resurface and every year I think it is going to be better, easier, that I will be able to “handle” this annual Sunday in May, yet every year it hits me, and this year is no exception, but I am choosing a different perspective.
I believe we are born with the deep need to be loved, to be known, to be seen, to be wanted, and when that is not accomplished, especially by the one God gave us as a mother, the wounds can cut deep and if not dealt with can boldly affect every relationship for the rest of ones life. But I also know that personally, I placed years of expectations on what a mother should look like, how I felt I needed to be treated as a kid and young adult, and when those weren’t met, the hurts compounded and the negative thoughts swirling between my ears only got louder and quickly drowned out any Truth trying to enter.
The rejection caused by a combination of unmet expectations, a mother who was so wounded herself that she couldn’t function let alone love and nurture, and a daughters heart that longed to be loved that wasn’t, can create a typhoon of emotions out of the instability that led to this moment. As a woman in her mid-40’s still trying to “be ok” with the gaping wounds that rip open a little less with every passing Mothers Day, I still cringe just at the mention of the day. This wound has created such a gap in my heart, that I firmly believe that being loved is not an option for me, I can easily look at each one of you in the eyes and tell you why you are loved, no matter your past choices, your current beliefs, or you future plans, but to believe it for me is the biggest obstacle to living in the freedom Jesus died to give us!
When I received the call that my mom was in hospice care, after years of “trying” all I could to bring restoration to our mother daughter relationship, I called the counselor who had walked me through a lot of the hurts and asked her how to handle the call I had just received. Her answer brought such peace to my bleeding heart, she said “Kim, unfortunately you are not grieving the loss of your mom as a person, but the loss of what a mother should be to a child”
I do not share all this to bring such negative light to my mom, I share this to say God is still in the business of healing our deep seeded wounds, if we will allow Him access. In fact, there are a lot of great things about my mom, first she chose to give me life, I was born in 1973, the year of Roe v Wade, she could have made a different choice, my mom was funny, she was creative, she was musically talented, she made sure I always had what I needed, she celebrated me the way she knew how, she did the best she could with the hurts she carried that were never healed for her before she passed.
The fact of the matter is we all hurt other people, sometimes intentionally, but most often unintentionally, we are broken people living in a broken world. I know my mom never woke up and said, “Today I am going to do as much harm to my daughter as I possibly can.” As humans we make so many mistakes, one for me is my mouth and words move faster than my brain can to stop them. My reactions to others behavior is not easily hidden, my eyes can roll faster than a tire on a Mack truck at 70 mph. The cold shoulder I can give, is reminiscent of the path of ice Elsa from Frozen could leave behind. I have said I am sorry more than I have wanted to, and have left many apologies unsaid, hoping the offense would be forgotten, without ever being revisited.
But in all of this I have a choice – do I believe what God says about me and am I going to choose to live that way, or be defined by the hurts and wounds of my past?
In Joel, God says to us that He will give back to us what was lost.
In Ephesians, He calls us His masterpiece
In John, Jesus asks the question, “do you want to get well?”
In Psalms, God promises that He will set the lonely in families.
And as I sit back and take an inventory of my life, these hurts that rear their ugly heads to bring me back to a place of hurt and regret, steal my joy, steal my identity, steal my purpose, but only if I give them access to. Because my reality of what God has done in my life, is a testimony to the verses and promises I mentioned.
Over the course of my journey this far, He has given me back what was lost, maybe not how I thought it should look, but when I choose to look at what He has done for me from an eternal perspective, I see His fingerprints everywhere. He has given me the opportunity to write a different story as a mom, to treat the joy of being called mom a different trajectory and to begin to be the mom to our son, that I wish I had had (but still with plenty of mistakes and apologies on my part!). He has also given me spiritual moms that choose to speak life into their adopted daughter and I can choose to hear what they are doing to encourage me on this journey, and accept their love for me, even if they didn’t give birth to me. Women who have said yes, when they didn’t have to, they chose to. He has also blessed me with spiritual daughters, that I have the honor and privilege of doing life with and they allow me to speak some wisdom to them, while they keep me young at heart.
He has surrounded me with people that build me up, that encourage me, that call me higher, that love me, so I can begin to see the masterpiece He has made in me and in each one of us.
He has given me a choice to get well, or to stay bogged down with emotional illness. He has given all of us a way out. He has written the path to healing, and it starts with admitting our sin, and in this case, believing lies about myself, that discredit who He says I am and then to confess our sins to one another, so that we can be healed. He has given me my people. People that hear in my voice when I am not ok and love me enough to make me talk. People who have limitless grace and unending love for this human, that can see past the mess in front of them to the person I can be and who He has purposed to do great things, just like He has each one of them and you
He sets the lonely in families. It may not be our family of origin, but it is the family of God. We have been blessed with the most amazing people, who we get to call framily. They love us as their own, they treat us as their own, they create an environment where we know we belong.
He is faithful to His promises and He wants us to live in His freedom, through the Truths that He set out so long ago.
No matter your history with Mothers Day or any other day that creates turmoil for you because of your choices or the choices of others, there is freedom and it is our choice to embrace it and live in it, or to continue down the path of self-destruction.
This Mothers Day, I am going to choose the perspective He has given me, of one that is healed, one that is loved, one that matters – He died for us to live for Him, the choice is up to me!