Today is Mother’s Day. A day where most take the time to craft collages, and perfectly sentimental captions celebrating their mothers.
For some, this day is not necessarily a day they look forward to. What about the people for which Mother’s Day is a trigger? How does one cope when a day of celebration triggers feelings like anger, sadness or betrayal?
This post will be one of my most personal posts. Something I’ve always wanted to write about but never had the courage to do. I am one of the people that gets triggered on Mother’s Day. My mother and I have a somewhat estranged relationship. This day is always a trigger for me. Recently, I’ve had some positive contact with my mother, but for many years we fell out of contact and we’re still not speaking regularly.
The “that’s your mother” folks trigger someone like me even more. I know she’s my mother. I will always respect her as such, however until I was able to get in a space of forgiveness, I prioritized my peace over reconciliation. I don’t need to be told who she is. Over the years, I began to cope when I feel triggered and now have even got to the point where I can wish her Happy Mother’s Day without getting in my feelings.
If you aren’t at that stage yet…here’s a few things that helped me cope when Mother’s Day is a trigger.
Celebrate Mother-Like Figures
Instead of feeling sad about my own mother, I choose to celebrate mothers around me that inspire. My grandmother is an easy woman to celebrate on this day. Sending her flowers, or taking her to lunch are some ways I enjoy celebrating her. She has been there for me in unimaginable ways and it feels good to recognize her on this day.
Find someone like this that stepped in for you and uplift them on Mother’s Day.
Write it Down
You may not be a blogger but I have always felt better when I write it down. It’s my personal form of therapy. Written expression has always been a strong suit for me. Even if you aren’t a writer, you’d be amazed to see how to just putting pen to paper releases feelings of angst.
If you are feeling some kind of way, get out a journal lay it all on the page and then go enjoy your day.
Spend the Day Doing Something You Love
Before I got the place I am now with my mother I would use this coping strategy the most often. I couldn’t take all the mother’s day posts on Facebook all day. They put me right in my feelings, and I wish to stay out of those as often as I can.
Spending time doing something you love makes you feel joy. For me that’s reading, music or exercise. All of these make me feel good. Especially if the book is motivational, inspiring or about go getting. Definitely if the music makes me sing to the top of my lungs or even better yet twerk something. Most assuredly vigorous exercise that releases all those endorphins and gets a good sweat.
Take the day and do all the things that bring you joy.
One last thing…
I want you to know that if you are in your feelings that’s o.k. too. If your relationship is anything like mine, I get it. For many many years, I stayed in my feelings. This morning when I opened my Facebook memories I saw a post I wrote 11 years ago about how much my mom sucked. So….yeah I get it. But don’t stay in those feelings. If you haven’t gotten to reconciliation and forgiveness that’s cool too. Just keep in mind that forgiveness is for you. Don’t let those feelings stop your growth and progression.
To all the mothers, mothers mothers, soon-to mothers, and aspiring mothers and even to my mother I wish you a very Happy Mother’s Day.1