Mothers Day has come and gone. It was a huge improvement over last year’s very special day which I detailed in a semi-rant post called My New Mother's Day. This year, Ryan asked me a few days prior to Sunday how exactly I wanted my day to look, and I jokingly replied that I just wanted an entire day to be able to escape to the bathroom whenever I wanted, for as long as I wanted, without one single person asking or telling me anything through the door (but then that would make me NOT a mother, right?).
My day was good - peaceful, solid, void of any huge pains or heartaches, good.
But - this day is also a constant reminder for three of my children of a gigantic ache and void in their own lives and that makes it bittersweet for me as their mom. We try really hard as a family to not dwell in the agony of the past. Ryan and I do our best to model joy and happiness in the life we have and not to allow ourselves or our children to use the tragedies of their past as some sort of crutch. I think we generally do pretty well in this area. My biological children embraced Mother's Day with all the joy and giddiness it held and showered me with 500 billion homemade cards and pictures. Mya and Jada were also excited for what the day represented and fully participated, but I’m sure they will have years when the day brings them pain as well. My adopted son was a different story this year.
He was angry. He had been angry for a week leading up to the day. I noticed a tenseness every time a commercial came on T.V about Mothers Day. The other kids would run to make me some thrown together picture declaring their love or they would hurry outside to pick another beautiful bunch of weeds, and he would sit quietly, not meeting my eyes, not saying a word, just silently aching for his loss, and I didn’t know how to make it better for him.
I can’t make it better for him and that is incredibly difficult as a mom. I want to be enough for Tate, and in many, many ways, I KNOW I’m a good mom to him and for him, but it doesn’t erase his loss and how this day blatantly slaps him across the face again and again and again with the memory of that loss. As his mom I want to take away the pain, take away the void, maybe even take away the memories because then it won’t hurt so much, but I can’t. I can't because at times I even question God's decision in the matter. Being a biological mother, I have a hard time understanding how the best choice for my children would be another woman raising them. It doesn't seem like the best choice but then God's ways are not our ways, and he doesn't owe us any explanations. It only makes sense to me in that God's ways are so much higher than we can comprehend, and I don't believe that our comfort and well-being are exactly the end all to His ultimate plan or purpose here on Earth. I believe that his ultimate plan and purpose here probably looks much more like an adoption than a biological conception, a choice to love others as ourselves, rather than a inborn, feel good instinct toward one another; a choice to love God and choose his ways over our sinful nature that wants to have things our own way.
He and I got into it the night before Mother’s Day, as we do occasionally, both of us having a first born tendency that needs to be right and both of us having mouths to match our desire to be right. He outright disobeyed me - something he has never done before. The three of us talked, Mom, Dad, and Tate, and he cried, and I cried, and we aired our frustrations and reaffirmed our love for one another, and I held my son and told him that I love him intensely, and I would keep trying to be the best mom I can possibly be for him.
And isn’t that all we can do for our children? Those of our wombs and those of our hearts? Just be the best we can possibly be for them, individually and collectively, relying totally on God’s grace and mercy in their lives and in our lives as we repeatedly stumble and pick ourselves back up, praying that somehow all the pain and the loss and the aches will be gone one day, and it will all make perfect sense when we come to the end of our races here on earth and come face to face with the one who orchestrated it all, our Abba father who has graciously adopted each one of us into his eternal family.
These were the beautiful flowers I had waiting for me the next morning - from Tate.
Just keep livin!