I didn’t dread mother’s day as a child, it was always my birthday that brought up feelings of confusion and frustration around abandonment and adoption. But once I became a mother, myself, I realized my uncomfortable relationship with the archetype of motherhood.
And yet, I love being a mother. Rather, I love being a mother to Potamus (most times, like when he’s not hitting me, or only eating chocolate chips). Motherhood has awakened a nurturing part of me that has let me settle into a part of who I am that I didn’t know I could even feel, let alone express. I dare to be more myself because I am a mother. I must be as authentic as I can, to set a good example for the little one I’m responsible for raising to adulthood.
But I feel motherless, in so many ways. I feel like I am discovering this part of myself and it’s unrelated to the experiences, or non-experiences, I had with my own mother(s). Even the act of buying a Mother’s Day card fills me with angst, because no Hallmark writer could ever express the feelings I have about my relationship with my adoptive mother. Hallmark could never write the complicated feelings I have toward and about my biological mother. And this year, my mother-in-law sent an email saying she definitely didn’t want anything for Mother’s Day, and so, clearly that relationship feels complicated too.
If I were stronger I might embrace the toddler years and say fuck it all, and make everyone focus on me as a mother. Me Me Me, and just let everything else just fall away.