What It's Like Not To Have A Mom On Mother's Day

Registered Yoga Teacher By Rebecca Butler
Registered Yoga Teacher
Rebecca Butler is an E-RYT 500 yoga teacher, writer, inspirational speaker and retreat leader.

"Because she’s the best mom ever..."

That was the title of the email I just received. I deleted it so fast I barely noticed who it was from — Shutterfly, I think.

It made my heart sink.

I’m still adjusting.

I’m still adjusting to being the person in the Hallmark store who skips right past the “Mom” section. It doesn’t apply to me now. I don’t have a mom anymore. At least, I don’t have a living one. This makes me sad. Most of the time I don’t let that sorrow in, but here’s the truth: It sucks ass to lose your mom (or any parent, I would imagine).

I miss her every day. Not so much that I’m not able to function in the world, but yes, so much that right now, tears are streaming down my face as I type this. Because in my mind, my mom was the best mom ever, and that email would have spoken to me two years ago.

I might have even forwarded it to her with a note that said, "Thinking of you." Yes, I probably would have. But I can’t now. There’s no one there at that email address anymore.

It’s ok — really, it is. She needed to go. It’s the natural cycle of life, and I get that. We live, we love and we die. If we’re intelligent, somewhere along the way we begin to understand that we're connected to a much greater consciousness, and that Source allows us all to be connected forever.

So in moments like these, when I'm temporarily engulfed in pain and sadness, it helps me to recall: My mom’s not gone. Her body died. But her soul is still very much alive and with me.

I work privately with two separate women who have unwell relationships with their daughters. These women are hurting. Their daughters are treating them, in my opinion, in a horrific manner. Yes, I understand that things happen. I understand that over the years, people feel victimized and scrutinized. But at the end of the day, here's what I have to say: Get over it.

I want to shake these girls. I want to slap them and say, "You are so lucky that your mom is alive! You are so lucky that you can hug her and kiss her and tell her you love her. Ok, maybe she’s not perfect. But guess what? Neither are you. No one is. Perfection is a myth. Please, stop behaving like a spoiled brat. Maybe you don’t agree with her every decision and action, and I'm sure there are volumes of things I don't understand about your relationships. But here’s the truth: You're blaming her for all of your pain and it’s pathetic. So, please — Stop."

Turn to love. Dig deep. Find that place in you that knows better. And then, lean in. Before it's too late, make a change. Lean toward love instead.

But I can’t do that. In fact, when I’m not hurting, I really don’t want to. Really, I just feel sorry for them. I feel sorry for them because on some level I know, it’s going to take a tragedy in their family that impacts them or their mothers for them to realize how silly they're being and how much they love their moms. I hope for their sake that they wake up before then.

Regardless, I will continue to shower their moms with love, as I do all of my students.

So this year as Mother’s Day approaches, in my own heart, this is what I say to my mom, in absentia:

Hi, mom. I’m thinking of you today. I love you very much. Thank you for being the best mom ever. This year on Mother’s Day, I'll miss you even more. But every time I think of you, I will smile — maybe sometimes through tears, but I'll still smile. And I will be thinking, Thank you for being such a great role model. I love you. Now. Still. And forever.

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