To all of the moms who have awoken in the night after just a couple hours of sleep to the sound of a crying newborn. Your body is sore from just giving birth and your mind is racing with thoughts you’ve never thought before. As you reach into the crib and lift your newborn to your chest, your heart is filled with an indescribable love that is so deep and strong it feels as if it may consume you.
To all of the moms who have seen the lines appear on the test and have felt the joy that comes with knowing life is growing inside of you, only to find later that the child you had hoped for will never be placed in your arms. Where there was joy, there is now a deep well of grief.
To all of the moms who have gone before us. The generations who have passed down their wisdom and their love. Their recipes and their skills. Their quirks and their traits. To all of those we have met, and those who passed before we could hug them, but have shaped who we are today nonetheless.
To all of the moms who chose the selfless act of giving their child up for adoption. You gave birth to your child and then shared that life with others who have desperately longed for a child to hold. You see pictures of your child growing up from afar, or maybe do not see pictures at all. But rest in the knowledge that your child is safe and happy and well and that, while the choice may have been hard, you have given them the very best life you could.
To all of the women who have longed to feel life growing inside of them. Who have tried and tried, but have not been able to conceive. Who have struggled for years with infertility and have felt the pain and grief and absence of the child they long to hold. Who have been poked and prodded and stuck with needles and injections. Your heart longs for the positive sign to appear on the test and when it does not, you break down and cry.
To all of the moms who have lost a child. To those who have lost a piece of their heart and are moving forward with the weight of heavy grief upon them. To those who keep waking and moving and going, but with the constant reminder of what you have lost that can never be replaced. You are experiencing the unimaginable and our hearts hurt for you.
To all of the stepmoms who are raising and loving children as their own. To those who endure even when they are reminded “you aren’t my mom.” Who have stepped into the role and give it their all each and every day. For the sacrifices they make and their daily choice to be a bonus mom.
To all of those who have lost their mother. Today is a reminder of what is missing in your life. Of the person you long to hug and kiss and tell “I love you” to just one last time. A mother’s love is irreplaceable. And when it is gone, her absence is forever felt.
To all of the moms who bring children into their homes for a period of time, only to give them back again. You have chosen the selfless act of being a foster parent, to help children and families in their time of need. You give them a safe place to land and rest, and then wings to fly when it is time to go.
To all of the women who have chosen to carry a child for those who aren’t able to carry one to term on their own. You feel life grow inside of you as your belly stretches and the kicks keep you up at night. You are a surrogate mother and are giving the gift of life to another family. The very best gift of all.
To all of the women who have loved children as their own. You may not have given birth to them, or raised them, but you have been there for them. You are the godmothers. The aunts. The grandmothers. The neighbors. The friends. You celebrate the successes and are there for the struggle.
To all of the moms who are grieving an empty nest and are excited when your home is filled with the sound of your children’s laughter once again. And to those who have felt the pain and anguish of a broken relationship with their child. You have watched your child wander far from home and pray for the day when they will return to your arms.
To all of the women everywhere who have loved deeply. To those who have sacrificed much. To all who have wondered if what they are doing matters. For the women who grieve today. And for those who are filled with joy.
Whatever the day holds for you, I wish you the very best.
Happy Mother’s Day from my heart to yours.