At the grocery store today, the card aisle was packed. Some card-shoppers looked perplexed; others looked lost or pained, while others were laughing. They flipped from one card to the next in search of the perfect Mother’s Day card. Funny? Or serious? Bible quotes or open it up and an annoying song deafens you? These are important questions…
But, the more important question is—what is my relationship to my mother wound? Do I carry unresolved anger and resentment? Am I in relationship with my mother? Can I speak to her honestly? Does she make me feel unsafe? Loved? And if she has passed, do I miss her terribly? Or not? What is my relationship to her legacy? It’s different for all of us.
Regardless of the relationship with had with our mother, and regardless of whether she is a part of our lives or whether we are estranged or she has passed, it is our responsibility as adults to mother ourselves now. It is our responsibility to heal our mother wound. It is our job to give ourselves what British child psychologist DW Winnicott called the holding environment—the space where we are emotionally and physically safe, where we are seen and unconditionally loved.
Many of us grew up experiencing a safe holding space; many didn’t. But we all need it now. And we are strong and wise enough to give it to ourselves. And to our partners and our children and our friends. And, maybe—for those of us with aging mothers—we can give it to them. We can reassure them of our love for them, our gratitude for their hard work. We can ask for their advice and remind them we are still in need of their wisdom.
For those of you celebrating Mother’s Day, I wish you a Happy Mother’s Day. I wish you a day of love and peace and truth.