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Mother’s Day can bring about various reactions. There are those who feel the sorrow and ache of what they cannot have- a mother or to be a mother, or still, to be without both those desires and feel like an island unto herself.

I am one of those women who can truly say, I understand. Mother’s Day affords me a morning to grieve a mother lost, a child never born, and a time to remember them in my heart before my kids wake and seek to celebrate me. After church a visit to the cemetery to honor a mother, a grandmother, and an aunt- all women in my life now gone from this Earth.

The cemetery is lonely, quiet. It’s the feeling of loss recognized. Some feel they are walking through a cemetery everyday- wading through the loss, the stolen time and moments, and just wading through as everyone else parades about in joy and celebration, and you feel even more alone.

The good news? After 20 years after my mother passing and almost 8 years since losing my first baby fresh in the womb, I can say: there is good. There is hope.

There is good and there is hope because in Christ, there is redeeming love. There is a love that heals, that is always working for you, and is the hope we have of reunion with our loved ones in heaven one day. God has been faithful, and His faithfulness to me looks like four beautiful babes that I birthed and am in the thick of raising. It is a maddening, loud, and often exhausting moment in life, but it is only a moment, something I remember as I watch years tick by and wonder how time goes so very quickly.

God’s faithfulness to you may not look the same as mine, but that does not mean He is not faithful. He pursues us, He sent His Son to die for us, and He gives us an eternal life that will supersede all our hopes and desires and lives here on Earth. And while no one can tell you how to grieve or how to go on from losing your mother or a child, there is hope that one day you will wake up and it will be a little better the next day. And the next. And next Mother’s Day you may still be sad, may still cry, may still feel a pang while others celebrate, but just know that is the natural process of healing and you must be gentle on yourself. My own healing did not begin until I was willing to let it happen, to allow myself to feel the loss and sadness and sit in it so completely that there was no running from it, until I allowed myself to talk about my mother and my child and be okay while doing it. So take heart, my dear sister, because joy will come in the morning if you cling to the hope of His promise and His goodness.

So if you are a mother who has lost her own, a woman longing to be a mother, a mother who has lost a child, or a mixture that causes you to flinch at the word mother, I pray for peace for you today. And the next. And the next, until it gets a little better and you can see that hope you have clung to through all these dark moments, and the joy comes.