My “First” Mother’s Day

This year was a very different mother’s day then I’ve become accustomed to.

19 years ago my mom died and I loathed this reminder of the amazing mother I no longer had.

4 years ago we began trying innocently enough for our own child.  Those next 4 years would bring us immeasurable loss and heartache.  And mother’s day became yet another reminder of my body’s failures, and the children we had lost far too soon.

This year, for the first time I held my living child.  I slept in (thanks Mr. MPB) and woke up to a phone full of texts messages.  Many of my blogging friends sent messages acknowledging the baby I now have the honour of holding in my arms, the babies I have lost, and some even acknowledged my mom and how hard it is not having her here with me.  It was truly amazing to have friends who acknowledged my lost babies and my mom – this meant the absolute world to me.  And, yet everyone in my “real-life” sent messages wishing me a happy first mother’s day, which made me a bit sad.  Sad that they chose not to acknowledge the children we have who are no longer with us, they deserve to be remembered and acknowledged.  It made me sad that they assume Baby MPB fixed all of the hurt and loss we went through as if he erased their memories. Really, I just felt sad that infertility, baby loss and adoption are not understood by the majority of people.  It made me remember just how lonely the past mother’s days have been for me, as no-one acknowledged the mother that I was.

Anyways, this year, I acknowledged how much my life has changed.  I thought about how weird it is to be a mother without my own mother around to show me the way.  I thought about how much I miss my mom.  And I thought about how much I wish all my children were in my arms.  And then I thought about everyone else out there who is still trying and waiting for their own child.  I thought about our son’s birth mom and all she has gone through, and when I wrote her an email to acknowledge her on Mother’s day I couldn’t help but think about how her heart must hurt and yet how thankful I am that she chose us and made me a mother.  There really just aren’t words to explain the emotions that ran through me.

I made a point to spend the day focusing on how truly thankful I am for our little guy. And so on my first mother’s day with a living child, I spent the day with Mr. MPB and Baby MPB.

We typically aren’t too interested in Hallmark created days, so all I wanted was a day with my two favourite guys.  But, I did received my first ever mother’s day present – a picnic blanket so that we can enjoy the day and many future days together as a family and a children’s book to read to Baby MPB – My Mommy.  Mr. MPB even put together everything for a picnic – yummy bbq chicken sandwiches, kale salad, etc. Unfortunately, the weather did not cooperate so we will have to try another day. But, I did spend the day with my family, and that’s truly all I ever want.  I snuggled my son, he napped on my chest, we read books, and we played together.

 

We clearly kept the cute baby attached to those chubby little legs.

We clearly kept the cute baby attached to those chubby little legs.

And, as I reflected on everything, and how fortunate I am to be Baby MPB mother, I decided I needed to share my fortunate with another mother who is without.  We had intended to sell all of Baby MPB’s stuff as he grows out of it to contribute to his education fund, but decided it is more important to share what we have with another mother who has nothing left. So, I packed up everything Baby MPB is no longer using – clothing he has out-grown, blankets we no longer need, diapers, an extra activity mat, etc. I kept a few special pieces (the outfit he left the hospital in, his first hiking boots, the blanket the hospital gave him, etc.), but everything else was donated. We loaded up the car and donated everything we could to the 88,000+ people who have been evacuated and lost their homes by the devastating Fort McMurray fires.  Every single time I hear about a mother/family who has lost their home to Canada’s largest ever forest fire, I have tears in my eyes.  I cannot fix the grief that many are feeling as they’ve lost everything, but I hope someone else will appreciate Baby MPB’s things just as much as we have.

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27 Comments on “My “First” Mother’s Day

  1. I thought about you and the mixed emotions you must be having a lot. Of course you turned it into an opportunity to give. So very like you. Xo

    Liked by 1 person

    • Someone out there needs Baby MPB’s “old” clothing more then we could even begin to imagine, so how could we not give? And as an added selfish bonus Baby MPB’s nursery no longer has a stack of stuff on the floor that I need to deal with. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I thought of you on Sunday, and ALL of your children – the one in your arms and the others who live in your heart. Happy belated Mother’s Day, my friend.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. So wonderful of you guys to donate to the fire victims. I just cannot imagine the devastation of losing everything.

    Glad you had a relaxing day. I feel the same way about how this community acknowledges us as mothers while “real life” does not. It just bothers me so much. Hugs.

    And baby MPB had the cutest legs!! 💜💜

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Love that you got a picnic blanket, that’s adorable. I’m sure you’ll be getting lots of use out of it.
    TOES!! How stinkin cute are those! Glad you guys had a nice day together 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I am so happy that you had a day filled with love, little chubby legs and Cheeks to pinch and reflection on your babies in heaven with your mom. May every year on that day, the pain have a little less sting.

    What a wonderful gesture of love you have made to those in need !!

    Happy Mother’s Day !!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Days together are the best gift of all. That beautiful picnic blanket is a great symbol of that. I hope you make many fond memories on it. Love that you donated your outgrown baby items to another mother and baby in need. What a tragedy. Although I wish it were under different circumstances, it’s heartwarming to see Canadians coming together to help each other. I am super stoked to finally get a glimpse at little baby mpb 🙂 those thighs! I just want to eat them.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Happy Mother’s Day! Your mixed emotions are so valid and complex – much more complex than most people will ever experience on this date! I am so happy you found an opportunity to give – what a wonderful gift to those families that are devastated! Love seeing your baby boy’s cute little legs! So sweet!

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  8. What a beautiful gift to give on Mother’s Day! And how lovely to think of your little family just quiet and safe together in your home, while the weather does as it pleases outside. Such a happy image!

    I’m so sorry your happiness was marred by the lack of understanding on the part of your “real life” friends and family. Perhaps, though, it will help if I share my own perspective. You see, I always knew infertility was hard. I had no idea it could be devastating. I knew a miscarriage was a painful loss. I had no idea that even an early miscarriage could feel like losing an actual living child – one that parents would mourn for years. So while I’ve tried to be sympathetic toward friends going through such losses, I now know I’ve often blundered horribly, simply because I didn’t understand.

    Reading your blog has opened my eyes and my heart, and for that I thank you. I do want to suggest, though, that maybe your “real life” friends and family, who don’t have the privilege of reading these words – which are written with such raw honesty – may simply not understand. You take us, your blog friends, down the road you have walked, but I don’t have the sense that you share as openly with people who actually know you. I get that – you’ve needed to protect yourself. But maybe it’s time to consider maybe letting some of them see this, so that they can understand more fully?

    Liked by 1 person

    • This comment has been on my mind constantly since you wrote it and I’ve been meaning to comment back and just haven’t seemed to have the time. So first, my apologies for how slow i’ve been. 🙂
      Second, I think you make a wonderful point about our “real life” friends not understanding or at least not seeming to understand. I agree full-heartedly that those who don’t know what we went through, should not be (and cannot be) expected to sympathize or empathize with us. How could they? That would be a completely unrealistic expectation for them to.
      I also think, as you share your own understanding, you make a good point about even those who know what we’ve been through still just not getting it because they haven’t walked that path and shared that experience. What we went through is something that by far the majority of people don’t have to experience, which for the world’s population is actually a good thing. And so, of course people don’t truly get it.
      I guess the one thing I will add is that a few people know the intimate details – they know about waiting for each baby to die and they know about the abortion clinic. Some even knew as it was happening (i.e. my parents, Mr. MPB’s sibling, a few friends, etc.) and today no-one ever acknowledges or speaks about it. With those people I find there silence now interesting because we were so honest and talked about it and still do from time to time. But, I think more then anything, which you helped remind me about, is that this stuff is hard. And like most hard things people don’t want to have those conversations. And as much as I may want to talk about it, they don’t know how and/or are too uncomfortable to have those conversations. I guess, maybe, I need to be a bit more understanding of their perspective too.

      Liked by 1 person

  9. Happy Mother’s Day, my Dear Friend! You were in my thoughts on Sunday. I can’t imagine how happy and difficult it must have been at the same time. That is awesome how you’ve donated Baby MPB’s things to those that have lost so much. I’ve heard bits and pieces about the wildfire but didn’t realize so many people have been evacuated. Sending you lots of love and give that sweet baby some cuddles for me. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  10. There’s so much to respond to in this post — how very kind of you it was to donate Baby MPB’s clothes, how much I feel you on the “first” Mother’s Day mixed feelings.

    But can I just take a second to appreciate those adorable chubby Baby MPB legs??? Oh my goodness, the sweetness! I’m sure the rest of him is just as scrumptious. 🙂

    I’m so glad that you had a lovely day with your two guys, and I hope you’ll get lots of use out of that picnic blanket in the days to come!

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  11. Pingback: Reflections on Mother’s Day | thewhitworthsNC

  12. How nice of you to donate all those things! I completely relate to your feelings that a lot of people don’t understand (especially those “real life” friends) and I recall not understanding myself before experiencing my miscarriage. I hope one day that will change. Thank you for sharing your feelings and experiences in the meantime. Your words spread that awareness and are very relatable!

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  13. I’m so happy that you have people in your life who acknowledge ALL of your babies. Sorry I’ve been a crap friend and out of touch lately, I’ll try to get in touch soon! But I DID think of you in Mother’s Day!

    Liked by 1 person

  14. It wasn’t Mother’s Day here (it’s in March) so I didn’t notice so much… I am glad you had a wonderful Mother’s Day. I love the blanket and it’s so nice of you (and baby!) to donate his old things to others. Xx

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Such an emotional day for you on all levels, sending love and hugs. It of course was not Mothers day in the UK but I thought about my friends over the pond, Mothers day is always massively painful for me and I am blessed to still have my Mom so I can not really imagine what it is like for my friends who don’t. No one acknowledges you as a Mother when you have suffered miscarriages and that hurts deeply. I am glad you had some people who did remember to acknowledge this for you and the loss of you Mom. I am glad you had some special family time together with your son. Despite everything you are still thinking of others, bless you. xo

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Happy Mother’s Day! It’s so sweet of you to donate.

    My family sent me a happy 1st mother’s day card and it stung. The sentiment is there, but the message hurts a bit. I’m glad you had a good day with your family.

    Liked by 1 person

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