The pain of Mother’s Day

I love Mother's Day. Mothers have a tough job and deserve to be honored. But I gotta be honest; for the last six years, I don't enjoy being at church on Mother's Day. For one reason.

“Will all the mothers in the congregation please stand!”

I get it. It's a nice gesture to honor all the moms there. All the ladies that spend their entire morning herding children through the morning, barely giving their own appearance a second glance; they deserve that moment of recognition. The women who have raised children and have several beautiful grandchildren to brag on; they deserve it too.

It's just a really awkward moment for some of the rest of us.

I'm not a mother in the physical sense of the word. I haven't birthed or even raised an adopted baby. But I consider myself a mother. My children are just growing up halfway around the world without me. My three years spent with the African Children's Choir gave me 49 beautiful children that I was blessed to “mother.” They're growing up and some are practically legal adults now (???!!!), but they will ever remain in my heart.

If I stand during that moment in church, I will get funny looks and might even start rumors that I'm pregnant or something. So I sit, and feel a little sad about the kids that aren't a part of my physical life anymore.

I think of my sister in law, who went through the agony of waiting for an adopted baby. She has a beautiful son now, and can stand proudly as she cuddles that beautiful boy, but I'm sure the years of waiting made Mother's Day a painful reminder for her.

I found this post and thought it was beautiful. I hope you will take the time to read it.

And Happy Mother's Day to all the mothers, aunties, sisters, nannies, grandmothers, and friends out there.


9 Replies to “The pain of Mother’s Day”

    1. True. I think it depends on the person. Women on a whole are more sentimental. I for one, get carried away and probably need to take a step back and a deep breath sometimes. 🙂

      I’m sure there are many men out there who experience pain on Father’s Day… but you’re right. I think there’s a different “stress” put on Mother’s Day.

  1. I have a friend (who is a father of two kids) who doesn’t go to church on Father’s Day, but for a different reason.

    He doesn’t go because while on Mother’s Day the pastor is all “motherhood is a gift from God and you tireless women deserve a round of applause”, Father’s Day is all “you men are not taking care of your kids and that’s why society is falling apart.”

    Father’s Day is one of the reasons I left a (different) church. When the pastor preaches a sermon that is all about being a good father and not at all about God or Jesus, then it’s time to leave.

    If my current church even mentions anything about Mother’s Day this Sunday, I’ll be shocked.

    1. Wow. Thanks for sharing that. That’s a really good point. Churches do seem to honor mothers more than fathers and that’s really sad.

  2. Jamie…Nathaneal told me about your blog because I also traveled with ACC. I don’t think we ever met but our tours may have overlapped. I do recognize your name as one of the ACC Aunties of the past. (I traveled w/ choir 24 in 2003-2004). Anyway, I know what you mean truly feeling those kids are yours. When people would blow off the fact that I was young and did not have my own children it was painful because I had spent over a year being a mother to 26 kids in every sense of the word beside pregnancy and birth. But, how do you really, truly explain that?

    I am a mom now, but I had the same thoughts when I stood up last Sunday morning for people to pray for me. It was a lovely little tribute, but I have friends who are desperate to get pregnant now or recently lost pregnancies and I wouldn’t want to be there on that Sunday morning if I were them.

    1. Sarah, thanks for visiting! I recognize your name as well, and I know why now. i was with choirs 25 & 27, so our tour time overlapped. I probably heard your name several times when I heard news of choir 24.

      I know you totally understand the “mother yet not a mother” quandary. Nobody can understand it unless they experience it. I feel like if I try to tell some people, “No, I really AM a mom!” I’ll get a a condescending look and a pat on the head. Or blank looks.

      Thankfully, this Mother’s Day, my pastor asked ALL women to stand. He acknowledged that all women are mothers in some capacity. I e-mailed him, telling him how much I appreciated it. I was able to stand without awkwardness and not feel like that empty shell of a woman. I only hope the same thing happens on Father’s Day.

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