Thinking Of You On Mother’s Day And Hoping You Are Showing Yourself Love And Compassion

Mother’s Day has always been the most important day of the year to me.

No, it is not Christmas. It is not Easter. Or my birthday. Or an anniversary of something special. It is not any one of several really special days throughout the year.

The most important day for me is, has always been and will be for all of my life, Mother’s Day.

Mother’s Day while being the most important day is very often a day Mom’s suffer in silence.

We all wear many “hats” throughout our lives, daughters, sisters, friends, co-workers, coaches, teammates, helpers and carers but absolutely none is as important as the role we play as a Mother.

To all the Moms who wish they could have just one more hug. Who very often find themselves hugging that photograph.

Or to the Moms who have not given up. Have not lost hope.

To the Mothers who are helping in their adult child’s recovery. Is being that support when everyone else has walked away.

To the Moms who are themselves in recovery. Trying desperately to regain their own power. And to those women who have stepped up to mother a child in need of that support.

To all of us who have lost our Mothers. Whether that be too aging, to illness or to the disease of addiction.

To all Mothers who are holding on tightly to the memories of the past. Those memories mean absolutely everything. They are that connection that cannot be broken. Those memories are part of your beating heart.

Mother’s Day can bring up such an array of emotions. And each of those emotions are important to acknowledge. We should never deny our feelings. To do so is to deny our truth. And that helps no one.

You may be struggling deeply because the one you loved so deeply lost the battle with addiction and is no longer here. You may feel disappointment or anger or fear. You may feel let down by those around you, you thought would be there to support you.

You may feel hopeful. You may be seeing an effort and commitment not previously seen.

Your feelings are real and they matter. Don’t feel you ever have to deny what you are feeling. Always be real with yourself and make no apologies for how you are feeling.

So often when we tragically learn of another loved one lost to the disease of addiction, we hear “they were a ray of sunshine” or “they lit up every room they walked into”. And that is so important that those are the memories we have tucked deep within our hearts. Because that is truly who they were without their minds altered. Those are the memories you should keep. That is who they truly were deep inside.

But – our reality is that no one struggling with the disease of addiction is “a ray of sunshine” or that they “lit up every room they walked into”. The truth is that our loved ones addiction has caused immense pain, suffering and heartbreak. Each and every person touched is affected differently. And each person is feeling pain.

The truth is very often our loved one lied, stole, manipulated, instilled fear and caused absolute kayos and trauma. Very often families become very divided when one we love is struggling with addiction. One side wants to give all. One side wants to walk away. And the ones in the middle struggle not knowing what to do to help. And very often Mothers carry the load alone.

Many people struggling with the disease of addiction are also struggling with other mental health issues. Depression, anxiety, PTSD, past trauma never addressed, bipolar, any number of conditions that affect the brain and therefore affect behaviours. They are self-medicating trying to quiet their thoughts.

Don’t ever feel that whatever you are dealing with, whatever you are feeling at that time is wrong. Feel how you are feeling. Be real in that moment. Addiction affects every single one of us differently. Every Mom is dealing with the very unique situation that is their loved ones. No two people struggling are the same.

We love our child. We hate the disease of addiction.

We love our child. We do not like their behaviour.

We love our child. That does not change.

We can love them and not like them at the same time. That love is deep. It is profound. It is real and never quits. But we can honestly say that sometimes we do not particularly like them. We do not like that they lie. We do not like that we cannot trust them to be in the house alone. We do not like that we cannot leave our purse visible. That is the reality and no one has to feel the need to quantify those feelings.

I hope that each of you is able to find peace in today. Peace in knowing you did the very best you could with what you knew at any given time. We Moms put a heavy load on ourselves – we expect ourselves to have all the answers. And that is an impossible load to carry.

Ask yourself – did I do my best with what I was capable of doing regardless of whatever the outcome was? If your answer if yes, then rest gently – you did the best you could. No one can do better than that.

Wishing all of you a peaceful Mother’s Day of reflection, of good memories from the past, and hope for all the tomorrows. Nothing is more important than the role of a Mother. Along with that role comes a huge responsibility. Congratulations for doing the best you are able to do. And know you are not alone.

8 thoughts on “Thinking Of You On Mother’s Day And Hoping You Are Showing Yourself Love And Compassion

  1. Jayne

    Feeling lost at where to turn next, I stumbled across this, and I know God had His hand in finding these words here. Thank you, June, for sharing exactly what is in my heart and mind. I have a young adult son living with an addiction that I struggle to understand, but I do know he’s self medicating for all of the depression and anxiety that consumes his mind. He is a thousand miles away which makes the sadness even deeper that I can’t just reach out and hold him when he’s feeling so alone. So, yes, I needed to read your words and know that I am not alone in my worry and in my deep unending love for my sweet and funny “boy” whom I will never give up on. Thank you.

    1. Thank you so much Jayne for taking the time to write. I am so very sorry for the immense pain you are carrying. I hear pain and heartbreak in every sentence. In every word you have written.

      I am sorry your son is so far away. I hope the two of you are able to keep in touch with phone calls or emails or text messages. That connection I know would be vitally important to both of you.

      The disease of addiction robs our loved one suffering of the life they deserve, with peace and happiness. It also robs those of us who deeply love them. Every single day is both a day of loss and a day of hope. The feeling of loss, that yet another day has passed with our loved one struggling. But also, another day of hope. Hope that somehow, someway, our loved one will decide to reach out for that lifeline and hang on. And begin living a kinder, gentler life than the one he has been living.

      So many men suffer in silence from past pain or trauma. They build up walls trying to forget their pain and don’t share out of fear of being judged. If only they realized, putting up those walls and suffering in silence keeps them trapped. All we can do is encourage them to let down those walls. And we can love them. Love them unconditionally regardless of where they are with their addiction. Because in the end, that love, that connection, that understanding is truly what we all need.

      Please take care of yourself Jayne. So often we put ourselves last because what our loved one is experiencing is so devastating. So all-consuming. But remember taking care of yourself is not a luxury. It is a necessity.

      You and your son will remain in my thoughts. In my prayers that he finds his power. I truly care. Sending you a hug from one Mom to another.

  2. Betty-Ann Jacques

    Dear June,

    Thank you so much for your heartfelt, honest and inspiring words of wisdom and compassion. I needed to read this today. I have one son who struggles with opiate addiction and a second son who lives a relatively functional healthy life. Both of them bring me so much joy and yet so much suffering. I often use to perceive that it was much easier being a mom as long as my boys weren’t causing me grief or when they were behaving appropriately, doing well in school and generally just being boys. I could say with pride and love “those are my boys!” I still have snippets here and there of that pride, but these days I am also filled with worry, dread, frustration, a deep sadness for my son’s pain, disappointment and a longing for change. But most of all I have experienced a deeper love, a stronger commitment to understand my son’s addiction, a tireless support for his healing and an inner strength and compassion I didn’t know I had. I have held pain so deep and intense I have cried for days. I have no idea what tomorrow will bring, but I do know that as Mother’s, we are not alone in the pain and sadness, hope and love that we carry.

    1. Thank you so much Betty-Ann for taking the time to write. Your note has truly touched my heart. One line of your note was so powerful: “But most of all I have experienced a deeper love, a stronger commitment to understand my son’s addiction, a tireless support for his healing and an inner strength and compassion I didn’t know I had.”

      What a testament of your deep love. Your son (s) are very fortunate to have a Mom, who in spite of all the pain and incredible sadness and the not knowing what tomorrow may bring is there trying to understand a disease that is so difficult to understand.

      Remember to take care of yourself as well Betty-Ann – so often we put all our energy into helping the one we love who is struggling that forget about ourselves. Remember taking care of yourself is not a luxury. It is a necessity.

      Take care and please keep in touch. I truly care.

      Very sincerely,
      June

  3. Yolanda

    What a great article. My daughter has been in and out of jail so many times. I usually bail her out, but the last two times I let her do her time. I am at lost and do not know how to help her. I know she needs rehabilitation ,but she does not commit.

    1. Thank you so much Yolanda for sharing your story – I am humbled. I hear the sadness in every word you have written. You can
      only do what you have done – just continue to encourage and hopefully that day will come when she will reach out for that lifeline of help. She deserves the help and so do you. You will be in my thoughts.

      I hope you will keep in touch. Know you are not alone.

      Very sincerely,
      June

    2. Linda

      Beautiful June !! Spent the morning with my son & two grandsons but as always there is that void …
      Justin is so missed but always carried in our hearts.
      Happy Mothers Day to you as well !!

      1. Thank you for your note my Friend. You were in my thoughts yesterday. I can picture your grandsons giving you giant hugs of love. Memories carried in our heart become even more beautiful and powerful. Justin was a gift who loved you deeply. Take care my Friend.

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