You Survived Mother’s Day


You’re thankful that it has passed once again. That dreadful holiday that reminds you each and every year that you are yet to hold a sweet bundle of joy in your arms. That you have no reason to be handed a pretty carnation at church. That you haven’t been invited to celebrate motherhood at a fancy Sunday brunch where dozens of other moms – young and old – are fussing over their brood.

You Survived Mother’s DayMother’s Day is a tough holiday for the infertile. There’s no two ways about it. It’s a day that most who are struggling with conception would prefer to just skip. It’s a day many believe is better spent in bed, inside the cocoon of your house, by yourself.

Yet, few of us have that option. We are bombarded with Hallmark-style Mother’s Day messages on television. We hear family members and co-workers talk about their plans for celebrating that special day. We’re subject to statements from well-meaning friends and family who tell us “Oh, it’ll be your turn next year.”

We try to block it all out, but – in reality – it’s just better to feel. Mother’s Day is a tough holiday, considering surrogacy or adoption, or who has dismissed motherhood altogether, needs to give herself permission to approach this holiday – and others that are kid-centered – with mixed emotions.

Chances are that if you have a good relationship with your mom you’ll want to celebrate her in at least some manner, be it just a card or perhaps a dinner out or some other together activity. That’s fine! You should! But if you choose to go out for such an occasion, do it on a different day than on the actual holiday. Take mom out for dinner the day before or schedule a girls only day the following week. Make it work for you, not for the rest of the world!

And if you passed through the day feeling ignored, you also need to recognize that your loved ones may not have known what to say to you on Mother’s Day. And if you were with others who were celebrating – either in a place like church or at a private event – you may have walked away disappointed. The truth is that those who know you are having problems conceiving or that you’ve lost babies due to miscarriage will likely choose to say nothing at all to you. Even your close friends and relatives will try to avoid the subject all together. Maybe that’s what you want and maybe it isn’t. So, next year, if you are still in the same predicament, approach the holiday honestly and tell those you’ll be with exactly how you’d like to handle it.

Always remember that the best thing you can do is to be genuine YOU. If you’re an extrovert who gets your energy from others, hiding at home is likely not going to make the day go any more smoothly. Instead, choose an activity that doesn’t involve moms, brunch, carnations, or anything else associated with the holiday. Go see an action/adventure movie, enjoy a little bowling, head to a museum, invite other non-mothers over for a meal. Do anything that surrounds you with people who won’t spend the day feeling sorry for you.

And while this advice comes after a holiday that may have been a struggle for you, it can be applied to everyday life, really. No matter what the occasion, you are allowed to hurt. You are allowed to celebrate. You are allowed to be alone. You are allowed to have fun with others.

Being yourself allows you to get through the tough times your way, which is – by far – the best way.

Go back