Every Mother’s Day I find myself asking the impossibly layered question, “What does it mean to be a mother?” Through the exhaustion, the doubt, the gratitude, I find that there are moments of clarity about just what it might mean to mother, and then other moments I feel lost in an abyss of wondering if anyone ever “gets it”. I think about myself as a teenager, ignorant and self-involved – too busy hair spraying my bangs and crashing bush parties to really notice – was my Mom okay? Did she feel seen?
To be a mother is the ultimate paradox. Completely individual in that we all “Mom” uniquely, yet it’s one of the most universally shared experiences among those who identify as female. To be a mother means our kids can make us feel trapped and blessed at the same time – yearning for our youth but also experiencing a love that we could not live without. And sometimes, to be a mother means we carry our babies and somewhere along the line, we lose them. Motherhood is heartbreak and heart burst.
I think on Mother’s Day, we hold space for the people in our lives who take care of us, because the definition of Mom is far more complex—it’s a feeling, an action, a place. Love on the people who nurture you and be brave enough to tell her them how much they mean to you (even if they fuck it up 70% of the time). Whether those who have mothered you are here or somewhere above, know they would love to know if they mattered to you. Remind yourself that in the end, all we want is to know that we matter.
I had an amazing day with you! I am teacher in the mystery lake school division. I have been teaching for 23 years and a mother for 10 years. I do feel like I started yesterday, and I agree with you that we cannot move forward unless we acknowledge the past. I am excited that my son will have a new history and hope he makes a change in building new relationship with all. The message you sent today is not new but your delivery and style is realistic and dynamic. I want my son to have positive life experiences and I want him to be the future of change. I will not lie, I do get stuck and need a re-start sometimes.. The one thing I do know is that when I walk into that classroom on Monday I am going to try and make a difference with my class. “Fuck I can only try”. Thank you for being you and for being true. I will never not stop trying.