Motherhood For Me Ain't Been No Crystal Stair
For many of us, the second Sunday in May is a source of pain and suffering. Between the run up to Mother's Day and the 24-hour span that constitutes Mother's Day, many of us smile through the pain that we endure. Today, I pray for those of us whose experience with motherhood has not been ideal or happy or joyous. I pray for us who are mothers or not mothers. I pray for us who have been hurt by our relationships with our mothers. I lift us up in prayer today to let you know that you do not have to suffer alone. God hears our cries. God wants us to be healed. God wants us to be whole. Let us cast our cares upon God. God cares for us.
Us As Mothers or Not As Mothers:
Many of us have never wanted nor attempted to have children. We are at peace with that decision. Yet, society looks down upon us and we are treated as less than because we "do not have a family." In the eyes of the world, clearly, something must be wrong with us. Society does not regard our lives and current relationships as valid because offspring are not a part of the equation. This has been a source of pain. I pray for healing.
Some of us may have attempted to get pregnant on several occasions and through various methods, yet miscarriage met us at every turn. We may feel less than whole because our wombs deny us the opportunity to carry and deliver a living being. I pray for comfort.
Many of us may have given birth or adopted after experiencing a miscarriage. Yet, we still mourn the loss of what could have been. I pray for consolation.
Others of us became pregnant as teenagers. Initially, we may have wanted to terminate the pregnancy. Yet, we did not. Now, we regret our decision to give birth. That regret is a source of guilt. I pray for the elimination of guilt.
Additionally, we may have become pregnant as teenagers and gave the child up for adoption, either voluntarily or involuntarily. We wonder where our children are. We live with an emptiness for what we lost. We exist in a constant state of mourning. I pray for comfort and peace.
A lot of us have adopted children, whether it was a legal adoption or we raised the offspring of our family members or friends. We welcomed these individuals into our homes. Loved them. Raised them. Prayed for them. Yet, they tell us "You are not my mother" and leave our lives without looking back. I pray for healing of our hearts.
Many of us have terminated numerous pregnancies. Now, our bodies refuse to allow a pregnancy to begin. Now, we regret and lament our previous decisions. Those previous decisions are a source of pain. We may think that God is punishing us for those decisions. I pray that we learn to forgive ourselves.
Some of our children have been taken from us because of death from illness, death from homicide, death from suicide, incarceration, addiction... We mourn the loss of these relationships. I pray for solace.
Our Relationships with Our Mothers: (This part is for both men and women)
Some of us have or had mothers who did not like us or love us. Their disdain for us was palpable. They did not hide their awful feelings for us. We wanted to have a strong, loving relationship with our mothers. She did not want such a relationship with us. I pray for healing of our hearts.
For others of us, our mothers were teenagers when we were born and our grandmothers or aunts raised us. We never established a loving relationship with our mothers. We mourn the relationship that never developed. If our mothers are still alive, I pray that a mutually affectionate relationship will be formed. If our mothers are no longer alive, I pray for comfort for that lost opportunity.
Many of us were our mother's favorite child. This status caused strife with our siblings. We may resent our mothers for placing that burden upon us. We may resent the jealousy of our family members. I pray for reconciliation.
For some women, mental illness prevented them from having the capacity to walk in the role of mother. We wanted to establish and maintain a relationship with our mothers, but we could not make any connection, through no fault on our part...or theirs for that matter. I pray for understanding for her incapacity.