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Happy Mother’s Day

Happy Mother’s Day

First of all, congratulations on getting through another week. The sun has poked her glorious head through the clouds - and hopefully with the Impy beer garden opening on the 12th April and hope on the horizon, your spirits have lifted slightly.

Happy Mother’s Day to all - celebrating and honouring those who are mothers, as well as motherhood, maternal bonds, and the influence of mothers in our society. For many, this may mean a breakfast in bed, some small gifts and a nice card, but this can be a difficult day for some people. Things aren’t always so simple, this is the nature of families. Losing parents can mean a few different things. Death can separate bonds and tear apart families, leaving a hole that can feel so gaping and empty and unjust and incomplete. You can come to terms with it without accepting it, and just when it feels manageable, birthdays or mother’s days or father’s days or Christmas rolls around, and suddenly you’re left feeling not so sure after all. But losing a parent through death doesn’t necessarily mean they are not with you any more, maybe the opposite, maybe you feel their presence intensely, and I certainly believe that those you have loved and lost never really leave you. Parents can also be lost through absence. Physically there, but not present. Physically absent, and not present. By choice or otherwise. And this is a difficult mix of feelings to deal with on a day like today if this is something you relate to. If this speaks to you, please know you are not alone, and there will always be someone who wants to listen to your feelings. Families are complicated! And the wonderful thing about life is that if the family you were born into is absent, they don’t have to be your family anymore. Your friends, your significant others, your colleagues and peers and pets are your family too - just because one family doesn’t work out never means that you are family-less. Love comes in many forms, and you are always worthy of all love.

I would like to direct you to a book I read a while ago, called ‘How To Be Alone: If You Want To, and Even If You Don’t’, by Lane Moore. It talks about how lack of love can lead to feelings of inadequacy, and tells us how she has come to feel more connected through one of the many things that links us as human beings - loneliness. I think this is relevant on Mother’s Day because she talks about how her family, especially her mother, were absent. Here are some quotes, and if you do decide to read the book, I hope you find it as insightful and joyous as I did.

“And more than anything, feel proud of yourself, because you didn’t let being ‘other’ kill you. You’re still here, and one day maybe you’ll have a family of your own and you’ll love the holidays. Or maybe you’ll never like this time of year. Either way, you’ll still be here, living. Sometimes that’s the bravest thing of all.”

“There’s a very particular no-mans-land that comes with having alive parents who are technically there, could technically take you in if you really needed somewhere to go, but if you went there you wouldn’t be any safer than anywhere else.”

“So if you raised yourself and you’re listening to this, I am so proud of you. You raised a hell of a kid and it wasn’t easy! I can’t even imagine - no one can! Okay, I kind of can, but still. But you’re here and you could have easily backslid into pain and nothingness and worthlessness and hopelessness. And maybe you did backslide, time and again. But every time, you climbed back up and tried to be kinder and softer and find more room in your heart for compassion instead of hatred; hope instead of defeat. And let me tell you, someone (YOU) raised you right.”

I think, really, we don’t need specific days of the year to celebrate those we love and those who love us. Love is something that we need more of every day of the year. So if you are in the position to celebrate and spoil your lovely mums today, make the most of it! But I encourage you to buy her flowers or send her nice messages or share however you show your love throughout the year, not just today. The same goes for fathers, siblings, friends, families by circumstance or by choice. Spread love to those worth your love. Feel love and accept love. Love, love, love - it makes the world go round, after all.

By Serena Shakshir

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