Mother’s Day

I think Mother’s Day is hard for more people than we realize. Those living without their mom, those with a broken relationship with their mom or child, those who desperately want to be a mom, and those who have outlived their child, face the day with dread rather than anticipation or excitement over the plans for the day.

My first Mother’s Day, as a mom, we shared our journey with Addalyn on stage at church and also dedicated her. We were barely starting our journey as parents (about 2 months into it) and had no idea what the future held for our baby girl. I didn’t know if it would be my only Mother’s Day with her here on earth or not. Talk about some hard emotions for a first time mom. I wanted to be able to share that everything was going well and she was getting the best care possible, but that’s not where we were. It felt a little hopeless at the time. We were trying to find a cardiologist to recommend her to a cardiac surgeon for heart repair and it was harder than we thought it would be; not because she didn’t need the surgery but because they didn’t see the value in her life. Despite the hopelessness I felt in our circumstances, we still trusted God and the plan he had for her.

The next two Mother’s Days were not near as hard as the first one. Addalyn was doing well after her heart repair and was beating the odds. Then just a couple weeks after my third Mother’s Day I was rocking my baby girl one last time as she went to meet her Savior. To say I didn’t see it coming would be an understatement. Sure, there’s always a risk of complications with a surgery and surgeries always made me so nervous but she had been doing so well and I thought I was going to have more time.

The Mother’s Day after she ran ahead to heaven was by far the hardest one. I didn’t feel like a mom anymore even though I still was. Being recognized as a mom when you don’t have a child living is excruciating but not being recognized as a mom is even worse. It felt like Mother’s Day was just rubbing it in my face that Addalyn wasn’t with me anymore. And add to that the quickly-approaching first anniversary of her going to heaven. I was a complete mess. It hurt emotionally and physically. It still hurts each year.

The Mother’s Days since Everett came home with us were a little more bearable. I at least felt like a mom again. But every year brings me right back to where it all started. Addalyn made me a mom and there’s no amount of time that will make me not miss my baby girl. I will always wish I lived in a world where she could have stayed and I also get my boys but my mind knows that world doesn’t exist. God’s plans are perfect even when it hurts. Her life prepared me to be Maddox’s mom, learning how to navigate the medical world and not being afraid of medical equipment at home. And her death changed the course we were on for growing our family and brought us Everett.

This year marks five Mother’s Days without Addalyn and I’d still rather not face the day. I’m so thankful to have two crazy, silly, energetic boys who call me mom and I’m thankful for the time with my silly, crazy, snuggly girl. Mother’s Day has changed so much since my first one but one thing that will never change is my hope in Christ and knowing I will see my baby girl again, in heaven.

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