Reposting something I wrote 10 years ago on my former blog as I send my gratitude, love and peace to the moms today. My children are without a doubt my pride and joy. But I know this can also be an emotional day.
It was always a challenging day for me before kids, where I grieved my biological mom but where I’ve also always held such gratitude for my Dad and the special women in my life who loved me and helped fill that role. Including an especially important mama figure who has been steadily by my side since she met me at age 7.
And it continues to be a day of paradoxical musings as I feel such love and gratitude for our two amazing children and my amazing mama figures. For my husband and kids for reminding me and acknowledging me for all I do and that I AM a good mom.
But my heart still hurts with understanding… for those of us whose moms have passed … or whose moms may have not been capable of mothering even when they were alive.
For those of us who feel that pit in our stomachs every time we fill out medical forms where we’re asked to list how many pregnancies we’ve had (4 for me) and how many children we have. (2)
For those who are yearning or missing or doubting. Yes, life is a miracle … and it is both beautiful and challenging. Extending loving kindness and holding space and counting oh so many blessings as I share this repost below:
TO FIND BLESSINGS AND LESSONS WHEN IT FEELS DARN RIGHT IMPOSSIBLE
Originally Posted on June 21, 2013 by Shari Beaudette
How is it that sometimes we are able to “make lemonade from the lemons?”
To find the blessings and lessons.
How do we choose the path of positive re-framing instead of complaining and blaming?
I believe that it starts with sharing your story.
We all have our stories. And sharing is what shows our authenticity and vulnerability. It’s what connects us and shows us that we are not alone.
I shared in early June 2013 that I was heading to CT for my mother’s funeral.
I had a chance to say goodbye just 2 weeks prior but hadn’t seen her in 26 years before that.
I lost her the first time as a child to mental illness.
And this second time to acute myeloid leukemia.
And throughout the pain of this last month, I discovered a couple of simple, yet profound insights…..that I hope will support you too.
You see, I had to shift the “poor me” mindset early on in life. I was resilient and strong. And felt proud of my ability to bounce back; to recognize the blessings and lessons along my journey – despite a far from ideal early childhood.
But I realized over the last few weeks that all my years of being open and vocal about my story weren’t always about strength. I also learned that healing isn’t a one-time thing.
Layers of sadness and grief surfaced this month, as I processed my mother’s terminal diagnosis and then went to tell her goodbye…. for the second time and final time.
I realized in the moments between tears… how much pain was still buried deep within “my story.” I always thought I had closure to this loss. But how could I really? And while I’ve shared my story so “matter-of-factly” all these years, I now recognize that in some ways, it had become a crutch. Armor to shield my insecurities. Especially since becoming a mother. “Look how great I’m doing despite…
Adapting to motherhood myself, is what caused these wounds to begin resurfacing. I found myself victim to the story “that I just don’t know how to be a good mother because I lived with a completely unstable woman during my formative years.”
And then just last year, I learned that this was a cycle. A horrible cycle of pain I needed to release. Because the trauma my mother faced in her youth….most certainly led to her disconnection from reality.
So how do we find the gifts in moments like this?
It’s not always easy. But I do try to see and honor the blessings.
I’ve had amazing women in my life. I’ve learned that it absolutely does take a village…and I’m grateful every day for all the beautiful people who’ve been a part of my village. Who helped raise me and support me and nurture my gifts and my spirit.
I learned about being vulnerable and asking for help.
I learned that “closure” is relative when it comes to healing from the loss of a parent.
But the greatest gift and lesson was the reminder to slow down and reflect, heal, breathe, move, connect and “mine” these challenges for the golden nuggets of wisdom.
I believe that the universe was testing my core value and belief. Testing my commitment and my practice of being love. and finding gratitude.
Sharing my story is still important. But the reason for sharing my story has shifted.
It’s to help name and then surrender the parts of the story that are holding me back. The deep unconscious parts transferred in our biology or conditioning and development.
We are shaped by what does and doesn’t happen in our lives. Only in acknowledging and working through the painful parts….can we let go or find a new lens to look through.
That’s the beautiful news. We can rewire our neural pathways. We truly can change and let go of what’s not serving us.
I’d wrestled over the years with whether or not I needed to see my mother again. But when I heard the news that she had terminal cancer, I knew I needed to see her and set her free, in order to set me free, and in turn set my children free.
It was time to surrender to healing and transformation and releasing her pain. Letting go of the parts of the story that likely led to her demise, while honoring the gifts. Especially the gift of life that she was able to give to me.
So as the tears came, I realized that she was finally going to be at peace. And because this lesson of letting go in order to notice the gifts is so important for us all, I want to share what I wrote and read at my moms funeral last week.
About surrendering and letting go of what no longer serves us as we collectively embrace what does.
And no. This journey has not been easy.
But it’s in the acts of self-love and slowing down that I’ve been able to realize and honor the blessings and lessons. May you find the space and time for your own healing too.
Its so hard at times to know what to say. What to do. How to make things better. How to help.
What are you grateful for today?
Take a couple minutes out of your day to create/reinforce the habit of gratitude. Even and especially if it's a hard day. Where can you notice something beautiful or meaningful? Who can you thank? What might be a lesson or blessing in disguise? Take a deep breath. Become present and choose gratitude. ♥