Motherless Mother’s Day

This Sunday is one of those “firsts” they talk about in the aftermath of a significant death. It’s the first Mother’s Day I’ll experience without a mom. My mom died last September. Though it has been years since I was able to share the day with my mom in person, there is something achingly sad about not being able to celebrate the relationship this year. I think that’s because after a difficult relationship with her that spanned most of my life, the connection and healing that took place during those final weeks of her life gave me the gift of my mom’s love in a more profound way than I ever could have dreamed.

So, today, a prayer of thanks:
Heavenly Father, I am grateful to You for the ways my mom expressed her care for me as I was growing up: uncomplainingly shuttling me around here and there (something I was never quite able to master with my own kids), that unending supply of Oreos always on the kitchen counter, clean clothes, hard work for years in the office of a plastic bag manufacturer. I am grateful today, too, for the sweetness of the gift You gave me during those turbulent weeks leading into my mom’s death, and the honor of watching You work reconciliation with You and others in her life. Because of that time, I miss her more than I ever could have imagined possible. The sting is removed from her life and death because of Your great love and forgiveness. I honor her memory…and hope in You. In the name of Your Son, who honored You perfectly in all things.
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About Michelle Van Loon
  • L.L. Barkat

    Sadness. Yes.

    I was rereading Lauren Winner’s chapter on “Mourning” in Mudhouse Sabbath today and marveling at the structured space the Jewish tradition gives for mourning. I cried at the end of the chapter, where she talks of losing a friend and how she will remember that friend…

    “I have purchased a yahrtzeit candle and closeted it away… and on October 19 I will pull it out and find some matches and remember my dead.”

    Somehow, reading your post, I felt I was in the presence of such a flame.

  • Michelle Gregory

    Michelle,
    I can’t say it any better than L. L. did. Thank you for letting us help you carry your grief.

    Michelle G.

  • Michelle Van Loon

    Thank you to both of you.

    Your words and kindness mean a lot today.


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