Mother’s Day has been hard for me. My mother passed away five years ago this June 26. But Mother’s Day was hard before she was gone.
On her deathbed she blessed my sons, she thanked my husband for his parenting and love. She spent time alone with my dad and with my brother. And for me? Not a word. An angry glare in silence. A glare I had seen many times in my life. I met that look with the same little girl hopefulness: “ I love you Mom.” On her deathbed, she turned her face away from me and muttered, “I love you too”.
What would possess a mother to reject her child time and again all the way to the end?
A lifetime of hurts. A lifetime of longing for affection and acceptance. A heart that yearned for simple gentleness that was not given. That was her legacy to me.
In these years of healing since her passing, I have learned I have much for which to thank my mother.
She taught me to be introspective.
She taught me to be resilient.
She modeled a strong exterior and how to be a hard-working woman.
She showed me how to suck it up when life was tough.
She also taught me what kind of mother I wanted to be.
Since her passing I have leaned hard upon the Lord as I learned to trust Him rather than seek my mother’s approval. In place of performance I receive grace. I am accepted, as is, no performance necessary. These are Truths that I have Known in my head but now Know and Experience in my heart as well.
I didn’t realize how desperately I was seeking after the wrong acceptance, conditional acceptance. All the while God was patiently waiting to remind me that He already accepted me and took care of the needed performance on the Cross of Christ. I’m forgiven and accepted because Jesus was rejected and condemned. What an exchange!
Now that Mother’s Day is past these reflections may seem a little after the fact, but even today I recognized again how deep these wounds go and how God’s love is deeper still. My prayer is all will come to know how deep the Father’s love for us, how vast beyond all measure.