Making it through Mother's Day
I hope these tips and words of encouragement can help any women/couples out there who are desperately ttc or waiting to adopt. Mother's Day can be a tough day but keep your head up:)
1. Get prepared. I used to "gear up" for Mother's Day much like sports players do before a big game. Plan what you are doing and where you are going. Its always on a Sunday, so if you go to church then, what will it be like for you? Does your preacher or priest ask all the mothers to stand up? Just think ahead to any situation that may cause you pain.
2. Get out of town. A few years ago (before I was a mom), Patrick took me on early anniversary trip on Mother's Day weekend. I also turned my cell off and we spent a lot of time hiking. Being in nature was very peaceful.
3. Talk to people you trust. If you have a family member or close friend you are comfortable with, talk to them and find ways they can help you through it.
4. Survive Family Functions. If you are attending a family function, have a "buddy" that can help you out of tough conversations or insensitive comments. Also have a plan with your husband about how to handle this as well. There have been times I have been told something hurtful related to infertility at a party. Usually I would go into the bathroom, take a deep breath, and calm down.
5. Do something for yourself. Paint your nails, go for a walk, buy some new clothes, get a good workout, have your husband cook your favorite dinner (probably better not to go out to eat on this day since a lot of couples do for Mother's Day)
6. Talk yourself up. What are your roles? Are you an aunt, godmother, daughter, wife, friend? Write down all that you are. I did this last year and was surprised how long the list was. It helps to separate your struggle from your identity.
7. Stay off Facebook. It may depress you to get on facebook and see all the family pictures and moms posting what their families did for them.
8. Have hope. Never give up hope that next Mother's Day could be your first. And it will be that much sweetest since you had to work so hard for it.
9. Keep a Journal. I have a little book I write in from time to time. I write bible verses, song lyrics, or just how I am feeling. I have written down every insensitive comment people have said over the years. I don't write who said what, although I usually remember. And I don't keep record of this as a way to hold a grudge, but I write these comments down as a way to get them off my mind. I write it down, close the book, pray hard for a forgiving heart, and let it go.
10. Read. I have a book recommendation that greatly helped me: The Ache for a Child by Linda Dillow. I read it last year before I became a mom. It is a painful read because it causes you to face your feelings but is refreshing at the same time. Or find another encouraging book or read the Bible (I cannot read 1 Samuel Chapter 1 without crying my eyes out)
You gain strength, courage and confidence by every experience in which you really stop and look fear in the face. You must do the thing which you think you cannot do.- Eleanor Roosevelt