Maybe it was the cool and dreary weather compounded by grief, but Mother’s Day was very difficult. I saw many sentiments from other grieving mom’s that felt the same. Overall, our weekend started out good. We went camping, which is a Mother’s Day tradition with some of our family members. We also attended a lovely FFA banquet, where Libby received some awards and recognition for her hard work and involvement in FFA this year. Sarah was honored there and Chad and I were even included as Honorary Members of our local FFA Chapter. It was so sweet of them to do that! Had I known that was going to happen, I may have actually showered away the campfire smell before we attended! Lol!
We had lots of family time and enjoyed using our camper, singing around the campfire a bit, ate all of my favorite desserts, but something was just missing…and that something was Sarah. No matter how hard I “tried” to make it a good day, it just wasn’t. My heart was aching for her. Chad and Libby, bless their hearts, they were quite melancholy with me. Maybe it was because I set the tone, or maybe they were just missing being “us” too. Getting used to the new normal is hard. We still have moments of joy, but it’s just so different and our hearts always pause to reflect on how much more joyous it would be to hear Sarah laughing right along with us.
Not enjoying Mother’s Day isn’t a new thing for me. I actually have had a hard time with it for years. I learned during infertility, that it was a good weekend to just get out of town and not be involved at church. There’s been a few years, when I made an exception, but the heart ache for my babies in heaven is always felt more deeply on this day. A Mother’s heart is never more full than when she’s surrounded by all of her children. I’ve never had that.
As your children are growing and learning to communicate, there’s a deep intimacy that you feel when you look at them and lock eyes and say things that you mean. Sometimes, it’s a stern warning for correction-that may send a chill down their spine. Sometimes, it’s a meaningful statement of love and value that you hope instills in them a security about who they are and how much they mean to you. Either way, that connection that you make during that moment is priceless. It’s like you’re looking into their soul. If your child is still with you here on Earth, don’t ever take that for granted. I long to look into Sarah’s eyes and tell her so many things: how much I love her, how proud I am of her, how much I miss spending time with her, laughing with her, and singing with her. Honestly, I’m still haunted by the way that her eyes looked past me and on into heaven when she died. I know that’s the trauma. It’s happening less, but on Mother’s Day, my brain brought it to the surface again. Grief is like that. It’s like a loop that you’re stuck in.
The tears came and that’s ok. I needed to let them out. I’m healing, but I’m not healed. Mother’s Day was a reminder that I won’t get what my heart truly longs for until we’re ALL together in heaven. So for now, I’ll wait with tears, knowing that Jesus is collecting every single one of them.
You keep track of all my sorrows. You have collected all my tears in your bottle. You have recorded each one in your book.Psalm 56:8
He doesn’t just expect me to dry them up and move on. He stops with me and allows me to grieve. While He’s holding me, He’s also got His eyes on our girl. Knowing she’s looking into His eyes right back, brings me peace. He knows when I’ll be able to look into her eyes again some day and when I’ll also lay eyes on my 3 other babies that I’ve never gotten to hold. Maybe they know the answer to that question too and like me, they’re counting down the days. Until then, Mother’s Day is over and I’m one day closer to Heaven.