Mother’s Day is complicated — Thandiwe Dale-Ferguson, USA

When using this reflection, ‘Mothering Sunday’ may replace ‘Mother’s Day’ throughout.

Mother’s Day is complicated.

Mother’s Day brings with it many varied emotions.

Hallmark [greeting card manufacturers] would have us believe that it is all roses, breakfast-in-bed and hand-drawn cards.

But we know and acknowledge that it is much more complicated than that.

Some of us longed for children, but never had any of our own.

Some of us are on our own journeys or journeying with loved ones through fertility treatment or adoption processes.

Some of us have experienced miscarriage, the death of a young child or the death of an adult child.

Some of us became mothers in a planned-for-way, by accident, through adoption or marriage, as foster mothers, or as people who have “mothered” those around us.

And when we are honest, those of us who have children do not always love our role – sometimes we struggle with the demands on our time, our emotional energies, our bodies, our finances, our homes.

There are also those of us who struggle in relationship to our own mothers – who had to be mothers to our mothers, who were abandoned by our mothers, experienced neglect or abuse by our mothers, or who simply did not feel seen by our mothers.

There are those of us who are grieving broken relationships with our mothers.

Those of us who are grieving our mothers’ deaths – whether recent or many years ago.

And there are those of us who have wonderful relationships with our mothers or who have experienced the gift of healing in relationship to our mothers.

There are those of us who love being mothers and love a day when we get to be recognized for that particular role.

Mother’s Day is complicated.

Wherever you find yourself this Mother’s Day, whether grieving or celebrating, thankful or feeling unfulfilled, you are welcome in this sacred time and space of worship. You are welcome to cry or laugh or both, to step in and out of worship as you need. We hope you will feel seen, embraced and celebrated today, whatever your relationship to motherhood.