Friday, May 6, 2011

Thoughts on Mother's Day

I have been debating whether or not to write about my personal reflections on Mother's Day as I was not sure I wanted to share something so deeply personal for me. But after a great deal of thought and reflection, I have decided to blog in the hopes that it may help others out there.

As most of you know, I lost my own Mom 12 years ago to complications from diabetes and kidney failure. Mom and I were extremely close - about as close as a daughter and Mom can get. She was a joy to be around, had a gentle spirit and sense of humor. She loved her family, her friends, and God with a deep and undying passion. She was an amazing and talented artist and she shared those gifts with those that she loved. I have always said that I was truly and deeply blessed to have the Mom that I had - and in the grand scheme of things, 24 years was not nearly long enough to share with her.

As you can imagine, Mother's Day since then has been particularly difficult, and is compounded for me by another issue. When I was 19, I was diagnosed with PCOD which to make a long story short, means that I cannot have children. Oh, I could maybe, but it would involve thousands of dollars worth of fertilization treatments and as most of you know, money is NEVER something I have enough of. And of course there is the hassle, the pain, the agony of the fertilization treatments. Add to it that I am diabetic, and I have had to come with terms with the fact that children are something that will most likely never be a part of my future.

Over the years, I have endured the looks, the questions, the embarrassment of trying to explain to people why I don't have children. It is extremely painful to try to explain and often times, I am hiding tears while trying to explain "what is wrong with me." (And yes - I have been asked this question more than once.) Once when going through a particularly hard financial spot in my life, I was told by a co-worker (who had several children of her own) to "just have a kid" so that I could get government help - as if it was that

So Mother's Day often brings a huge plethora of emotions for me - but mainly it makes me sad - sad for what is missing in my life and sad for the fact that I will never hear the word "mom' meant for me.

This Mother's Day, I want all of you out there with children to hold them close, give them a kiss and be thankful for the blessing you received. If you are lucky enough to still have your Mom with you, then do the same. And if you see a childless woman, please think before asking what is wrong with her. It may not be by her choosing that she has no children.


Jami Mathias said...

I'm sorry that you are feeling sad. Hugs. :(

Julie - I have PCOS also. Although I most likely would have chosen not to have children. I was told at the age of 30 if I wanted to, I should start "trying" because I would need help in the form of fertilization therapy. Even though my choice would have been to remain child free, it would have been nice to make that decision on my own, instead of having it made for me by PCOS. I wonder sometimes if it wasn't for PCOS if it would have been different for me...

Sweet Seahorse said...

Oh Julie, I can hear your grief both over your mother and your medical condition. I'm appalled by the insensitivity of people at times. And what sort of a mother would a person be if they simply had a child to get some money from the government? I am a single mother myself and receive a government payment to stay at home to look after my girls. I did not originally plan to do it that way. I always planned to go back to work, but then decided that I wasn't willing to put my child into daycare so I could go back to a job I was pretty indifferent about. Life doesn't always turn out the way we hope or plan, but it's the way in which you deal with the hard times which make the good times so much better. Enjoy your Mother's Day, celebrate it in honour of your mother and of the children you spend time with. xXx Helen

Julie said...

Jami - I wonder too if I had the choice if I would have had children myself. As you said - it would have been nice to be able to make that decision - not have it pre-determined for me. I am tired of being judged by people because I do not have children of my own - and this is a huge reason why I blogged about this.

Thank you to both you and Helen for your kind words - and sharing with me as well.

Jenni said...

Julie- Thank you for being so candid and for sharing your heart her for all to read. I have been blessed with two beautiful children, and I am extremely grateful. I have quite a story about how I got those children, but not one I will post here. Your heart is genuine, and I can imagine the pain you feel at not having your own mother, or at hearing the word "mommy" in your own life. Please know that I will be keeping you in my prayers and in my thoughts. Blogging is so therapeutic for these times when we seem never to be able to come to terms with life's situations. Thanks for trusting all of your FB friends with those most fragile and intimate part of your life.
Love & Hugs, Jenni

mdgtjulie said...

Ah, Jules. I'm so sorry you're feeling sad. I have issues with Mother's Day too, for reasons that you know. And I understand you feel slighted when people ask what's wrong with you. (And really, wtf is wrong with them for saying such a horrible thing? Do they have no tact or human feeling at all???) If you need to talk, today or tomorrow, you feel free to call me anytime. If I'm up, I'll help you feel at least a little bit better. Love you!!!

Julie said...

Julie - You actually took the words right out of my mouth. The first time I was asked that question my initial response (in my head anyways) was "WTF? Who are you to ask me that question?" But the pain was still there - along with the pain of knowing something was wrong with me. I will tell you that I have gotten some small sense of satisfaction in watching people squirm when I explain to them what is in fact wrong with me.