Mother's Day by Jessica Gombis

Mother’s Day is upon us.  It’s a pretty loaded day I’d say.  I’m a mom and I have a mom, and well, let’s be real; we have expectations.  We have expectations of our children. We have expectations of our spouses.  Heck, we have expectations of the person giving the sermon at church, the server handing us our mimosa, the weather, the flowers, the jewelry, and the phone call.  C’mon! Being a mom is a hard job y’all so, it’s no wonder that mom’s have expectations.

There’s also so much heartbreak that mother’s day can bring.  There’s the heart-wrenching pain of wanting to be a mom and not getting to be one.  There are folks who have lost their moms and moms who have lost their babies. There’s mom guilt.  And even when everyone is living and thriving, the relationships between moms and children can be fraught with pain, conflict and absence.  There’s enough pain potential wrapped into this one holiday to land anyone in bed with the covers pulled over your head.

Some might say we should scrap the whole thing, and I think I agree.  While it’s lovely to have a day dedicated to honoring this relationship and these people who mother us, maybe the real issue is that one day can’t hold it all.

One day can’t hold enough gratitude for all the ways mothers sacrifice and serve their families.  No bouquet of roses, hand-written card, lovely brunch, or piece of jewelry can fully say thanks for all mothers do for us.  And in turn, one day can’t hold the pain of loss and broken relationships or serve to make up for them. It takes a long time; a lifetime sometimes to find that peace.

My perspective is that we need to make it our regular practice to honor and thank those who mother us as often as we can.  I need to call regularly, I need to send notes of gratitude regularly, and to give gifts regularly. No annual call or gift will ever be enough.

In seasons and situations of pain or loss, we need to regularly acknowledge those who are suffering.  When we are the ones suffering, we need to make it our regular practice to work toward reconciliation or peace.  It will take time and effort. If you find it difficult to do that work on your own, part of that regular practice may be going to counseling.  You’ll find some great Chicago counselors at Sprout Family Clinics in the South Loop or Evanston to help you on your journey.

Maybe the best motherly advice I can give you is to mother yourself a little this Mother’s Day.  Sleep well, eat well, love well and be well all you moms and dads and daughters and sons.

Also, I want a necklace and flowers if you’re reading this Sophia, Graham and Mason.  JK- but not really. Xoxo- Mom