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When you lose a loved one, there are certain days that always become difficult.  After losing my mom, days that usually evoked joy like Mother’s Day and her birthday, became days of sadness and loneliness.  But over the years, you learn ways to cope.  They never become happy days but they become days when you can fondly remember.  As the years go on, there are fewer tears on those days and more bittersweet smiles, thinking about fond memories.

Mother’s Day has always been the hardest for me.  When you lose your mom and don’t have children of your own, it becomes a day that represents nothing but loss.  A few months after my first Mother’s Day as a motherless daughter, I began volunteering at Chara House.  Those of you who have heard me talk about Chara know that my experience there truly changed my life.  The first day I walked through that door, I knew that this was where God wanted me to be, not just because of the work that I could do for these vulnerable children but because of the healing they would bring me.

Chara became my way to cope with Mother’s Day each year. It gave me a reason to celebrate on that difficult day. Each year it became a tradition that I would buy a Mother’s Day card for the staff, thanking them for being “moms” for these children.  They never knew why I made such a big deal about Mother’s Day every year or why I was always willing to volunteer on that day when most people took the day off from volunteering to celebrate with their families. Being at Chara made Mother’s Day a happy occasion. It gave that day a purpose.

After Chara was forced to close its doors, Mother’s Day lost it’s purpose again.  It went back to just being a day that reminded me of loss.  So, you can imagine how eager I am to one day have a little one in my life to give that Mother’s Day a new purpose for me. 🙂

But honestly, Mother’s Day isn’t the hardest day of the year for a motherless daughter in my opinion.  It’s those random days out of the blue when something happens and you just want to call and share it with your mom.  When you just want her there with you, for whatever reason, on a particular day.  And sometimes you can’t even explain why, you just do.  Those are the hardest days.  They catch you off guard.  It’s rare that I shed tears anymore on those expected “difficult” days like her birthday.  But those unexpected moments that come a few times a year…yep, those are still really sad teary days.

Most who have been through the experience seem to agree that the hardest milestone to deal with as a motherless daughter is becoming a motherless mother.  There are lots of things that have happened in my life that my mom has not been here to experience with me.  And that sucks.  But this is by far the hardest life journey to take without her.  My mom was a teacher.  She loved kids, she valued family.  She was the most caring person you could ever meet.  She would have adored being a grandmom.

Tonight is one of those “catch you off guard” moments when I just wish she were here.  Tomorrow afternoon, my “new to me” dresser is being delivered that will be used as a changing table/baby item storage area.  And I’m so excited to spend some time this weekend sorting through baby clothes and other items I’ve acquired already and organizing them in the dresser.  Yes, it’s a simple task that doesn’t require help but I just wish I wasn’t doing it alone.  I so wish she were here to sit on the floor in front of that dresser with me and fold clothes and daydream about that moment later this year when my first foster placement arrives and I get to pull out these cute little clothes and put them to good use.  This process of becoming a foster mom has been so full of joy, excitement and anticipation for me.  But becoming a mom without your mom is hard. 😦

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