Mother’s Day for Moms of Addicts
Mother’s Day is not an easy day for many people. Some are at the age where their mothers have passed at an older age, while others lost theirs way too soon. There are those who never knew their mom.
I have mixed feelings about Mother’s Day. It is sad we need a designated day to celebrate moms – the heart of the family. Yet, without Mother’s Day, lots of moms would not receive the attention and respect that is so deserved.
Being a mom, a good mom, was the most important thing in my life. I was not one of those mothers that became lost in their children’s lives or lived vicariously through them. I was far from perfect; I am sure I made mistakes that I am not even aware I had made. Perhaps my children will never know how important it still is to me, to be a good mom. They may never know how serious I took the responsibility of motherhood. It does not matter; I know.
No doubt, you can relate. You too did everything you could to be a good mom. You made some mistakes, but you put your child first. Many of you are still putting them first, well into their adulthood.
On this day we celebrate mothers and we, as mothers, are celebrated. Countless mothers will not be honored this year, by at least one of their children. Our kids are addicts, lost in the belly of their Beast.
We are working to get our lives back, in spite of where are addicted children are in their journey. We are trying to focus on ourselves. We are doing the work to put the pieces of our shattered hearts back together. We are making progress in forgiving ourselves, shedding the guilt and refusing the shame. Then this damn Mother’s Day arrives, again.
Moms of addicts are reminded every single day that they have missed graduations, birthdays, Christmases, Thanksgivings, weddings, and family dinners. We are painfully aware that other people speak with their children often, about normal things like jobs and relationships. Mother’s Day is a magnifier for all that we are already facing.
Tomorrow, you will need to fight. You will have to fight hard not to focus on your lost child. You will have to battle the urge to join your Beast in beating you up. On this Mother’s Day, find the courage to forgive yourself. I know you blame yourself for things for which you have no control. I understand that it is somehow easier to blame yourself for anything and everything than to allow your child some responsibility in treating their addiction.
I get how hard this day is for you, moms. This day will not be my favorite day of the year, but it is no longer a day that I dread. Here are a few things you can do:
- When the thought of your child (especially if you don’t know where they are) comes to your mind, and you begin to picture them in a dangerous place, change the movie. Re-run the movie to a happier time.
- If you need to cry, then let it out. Allow yourself to feel sad, just not for the whole day.
- Remember that Mother’s Day is just one day of the year.
- Do something nice for yourself.
- Make a list of some of the sacrifices you have made as a mother.
- Remember you are MORE than a mother. You are a woman who deserves to be celebrated, not just as a mom, but for all that you are.
- Know that you are not alone.
- Believe that one day you will be standing strong, no matter what.
I started to wish you a Happy Mother’s Day and then deleted it. I re-typed it and deleted it again. Then I decided, yes, I am going to do it. I am going to wish you a Happy Mother’s Day because chances are, your role as his or her mother, is not the reason your child is an addict. I celebrate you, mom, for all you did before all hell broke loose. I applaud you for trying desperately to save your child. I salute you for getting out of bed each day, in spite of your broken heart. I stand with you as you put the pieces back together.
Happy Mother’s Day!
Valerie Silveira is an award-winning author, international speaker and Beast slayer. Through the devastation of losing her daughter over and over to the addiction Beast, and finally losing her to a senseless murder, Valerie empowers others to stand up and fight for their lives. She is the creator of Nine Actions to Battle Your Beast and the Still Standing Sisterhood membership program. Valerie uses her books and Sisterhood to guide women in their quest for happiness, peace, and purpose. She builds up women of courage who stand strong against any Beast in their lives.
Until her death in August 2016, Valerie chose to call her daughter Jamie, “Jordan.”