Sunday, May 10, 2015

Mother's Day

This isn't what I wanted my first Mother's Day to be like. I've looked forward to this day for years. When I became pregnant I thought, "Finally! I'm going to be a mother this Mother's Day!" And I was right. I am a mother. But today was supposed to be full of rejoicing that the wait was finally over. But the wait isn't over. It's just started.

And yet, today hasn't been awful. It's been better than I'd anticipated. Kam made me breakfast, and he got me my Liam ring, which I shined this morning. I've had good friends reach out to me and remind me of my motherhood. One of the leaders in my church ensured I received the Mother's Day gift they were handing out this year. I was asked to help take care of the nursery at church today, which was a nice break from adult life. I got to take joy in comforting children. And I saw children call out for their moms a few times. That was a bittersweet sight.

But the most rewarding thing about today was centered around a thought I had in the first hour of church. A speaker said something about the great impact mothers have on their children, and I thought to myself, "What impact could I possibly have had on Liam? He was already perfect, and that's why he couldn't stay. And I hardly even had any time with him. He never even got to see my face or hear my voice." And almost immediately I realized how wrong I was. Liam was always going to have a life that short. I truly believe that. But he still needed a mother to give him a body. He needed someone to be willing to grow his body for him and carry him for just a little while. And that was it. And by necessity, that would mean his mother would have to give him up. She would have to endure receiving the news of his death, and giving birth to his still body, and living every day with his memory. And missing him every day of her mortal life.

So what's the rewarding part? I feel like I can honestly say I do all of that well. At least as well as anyone can "do" grief. I may not have conciously chosen this path when Kam and I began trying to have children, but now that I'm experiencing it, and I've had the chance to know and love Liam, I would have volunteered. I think God knows that when he gives us trials. He knew I'd be the mother willing to go through the pain of losing a child in order to give my son a body. I didn't know it until recently, but he knew it all along.

And now I have the comfort of knowing Kam and I have given Liam everything he needs to make it to heaven. All he needs from us now is to make it there, too, so we can be together. It's just a relief to know I am parenting my son well, even when it sometimes feels like there is so little I can do.

I always wanted to be a mother. But I never knew what it would feel like. The sweetness of loving a child is something I couldn't have accurately imagined for myself. I may feel like I missed out on a lot this first Mother's Day. But I don't have to miss out on the one thing that makes it all feel real.

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