Someone told me that I should blog about being a mom without a mother. First, I thought no one wants to read about that but then I began to think about how some things I write aren't really for anyone but myself and a lot of those posts end up helping someone so why not! If this helps anyone, I'd be extremely happy.
I never knew how blessed I was until my mom died and I don't know if she knew how much of a blessing she was to others while she was living. It's crazy how it's like that. How the most influential people do not know the kind of impact they have on others until it's too late.
There isn't really just one word or phrase to describe how it feels to be a mom without a mom but here are a few: Terrible, validating, exciting, nerve racking, confusing and I could go on. My mom passed away right after my 22nd birthday and I remember my birthday like it was yesterday. She called me and said happy birthday and by the way I'm going into hospice. 7 days later I came home to visit her and the next day she passed.
My mom holding my daughter at her birthday party.
She spent 3 months with me while I was a mother. She was there when I gave birth and she was with my daughter everyday for 2 months when she came home from the hospital. Although she was sick, she forced me to go back to NC to school with my daughter and so we were away from her for a month and then she was gone. 8 years later I have 3 more kids, a husband and no mother and it's hard. She prepared me for a lot but I was 22... we didn't have a chance to go over the motherhood course or the wife course (but that's another story). So here are a few tips that are getting me through this whole motherless motherhood thing:
Find your tribe
There are 2 types of tribes you need to find: 1) the basic mommy tribe. All moms need a group of mom friends to hang out with or vent to and the only thing you really need in common is that you all are mothers, 2) find your mommy tribe who have also lost their moms. For me, I have a couple of friends who have lost their moms and are doing this motherhood thing with me. We send each other random messages when we need to just to survive and it gets deep sometimes and I love it. Having someone that can semi relate to how you feel on a day to day basis is therapeutic and it helps to know you aren't alone.
Talk with a therapist
It's great to have someone to talk with that does not know you, your family or your history. To talk with an unbiased professional might have been one of the best things I've ever done. Life alone is tough and you need someone who will tell you the truth and to help you realize you are not crazy. Seriously, this world will have you thinking you are crazy when you're just human. The one thing my therapist helped me understand is that I am a grown up. I was doing positive grown up things but I was still looking for that validation and most of the time in the wrong places . I am the only one that can give myself that validation. It's ok to want another child after having 2 already. It's ok to start your own business while being a stay at home mom. It's ok to hire help if you can. It's ok to take a vacation without your husband and kids. I can go on and on.
Find a mother here on earth
Now this is a hard topic for me especially when I know that no one ever will or can ever live up to who my mother was or who will love me unconditionally no matter what I say or do. But I did realize there are people who come close. Maybe it's a grandparent, a friend or a play aunt but find someone who you have a connection with and when I say a connection I mean just that. Just because they are blood or family does not mean that there is a connection and that's ok. I have a handful of mothers here on earth (some blood some not) and these are people I can go to about anything. All for different reasons and all without judgement.
Rejoice in knowing you're doing it
Listen, your mom isn't here and you are doing a kickass job at being a mother. No one told you or showed you what to do and you are doing it and that deserves some respect. I mean the fact that your mom can't just come over whenever you call to watch the kids or rescue you when you need a break and you have to figure it out is enough for praise. So, fellow Momma, you are strong and I commend you!!
Pray and let go
This is key to surviving. I've always been the type of person to pray and let God handle the rest but when I had children I really began to realize how God works when you just let him fully take control of your life. I am a witness and boy do I have some testimonies on how God answered my prayers when I fully released my life to him. Just ask and I will tell.
How have you managed being a mother without your mom? Let me know in the comments. Let's help each other!