The Other Side of Mother’s Day - Encouragement Café - May 8, 2017

The Other Side of Mother’s Day
By Annah Matthews

Monday, May 8, 2017

The Lord is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit.” Psalm 34:18 ESV

That Mother’s Day was supposed to be a joyous one. After two years of infertility and various treatment options to conceive a second child we finally got pregnant. Our due date was the week of Mother’s Day. 

We had spent years praying for God to open my womb, to be able to conceive, to give our first-born child the joy of a sibling and the bond that relationship can bring. 

What better way to celebrate our answer to prayer then with a Mother’s Day baby. 

Except 10 weeks into the pregnancy we went in for a routine ultrasound only to be told that the baby had a very weak heartbeat. This pregnancy was no longer viable, the pregnancy would end in miscarriage. 

We left heartbroken, hurt, and devastated over this unplanned turn of events. We experienced deep sadness and grief yet somehow, I still had hope. 

I knew that the due date of the miscarriage would be difficult the week of Mother’s Day but I just knew that we would conceive and be pregnant again by the following spring. 

Except we weren’t. 

Not only did the week of Mother’s Day roll around but it coincided with our due date. I was so sad. So so sad. How do you make sense of it? My joy had turned to mourning. Instead of laughter I had sorrow. 

My faith was hanging by a thin string. 

I felt so conflicted. I was trying so hard to trust in God’s best plan for my life and claim the truth that His timing is perfect. I was beyond thankful for the blessing of one child which we already had but even this made me feel guilty because isn’t that enough? 

I waited and prayed and believed with such big faith, yet still I wrestled with disappointment and grief. God held me through the years of infertility, the miscarriage and the month after that and after that and after that. He brought me comfort through that week of Mother’s Day. 

He sustained my faith when things simply didn’t make sense and He gave me the strength to look beyond the why and into the what. 

What is God doing to grow my faith? What is God going to accomplish through my tears, heartache, and prayers that felt like they hit the ceiling? Not one single tear that I poured out to Him in prayer was wasted and He was perfecting my faith through the fire of doubt and uncertainty. 

I would use my story for many years to come as I walked with other young moms like me that dealt with the harsh reality of infertility and loss of a child. The struggle of infertility is unique and until you’ve walked through it, it’s extremely hard to understand the depth of pain, loss, and heartache you feel when your own body won’t cooperate. 

I didn’t ask for God to give me this pain so that I could minister to other women in this same situation, but God allowed it to happen for a season in my life so that I could comfort and encourage others with the comfort He had given me. 

Mother’s Day is wonderful occasion for many households to celebrate the moms who gave us life, raised us, loved us, and to thank God for the blessing of our spiritual moms and mentors. 

But it is also a very painful day for other women because their mother is no longer here, mother-daughter relationships are broken and estranged, the memories of their mother is not good, and there are women who suffer silently because they still wait for the day they can be a mother and hold a baby in their arms. 

Be sensitive this year to those around us. Be an encourager to those who don’t celebrate Mother’s Day with as much enthusiasm and comfort others in the way in which you would want to be comforted. 

Be willing to step in and love those who need to be loved and thank God for the women in your life who have poured into you with godly wisdom and love. 

Thank You, God, that even in this world of broken relationships, heartache, and loss You redeem the broken places in our lives. Whether You restore relationships or bring the desires of heart to fruition through answered prayers, You make all things beautiful in Your time. Surround us today with comfort and love and let us be an encourager to those around us who struggle through Mother’s Day and who need to be loved with Christ-like love. Allow us to be sensitive to You and give us opportunities to be a mentor to other women who need a fresh breath of healthy sisterhood. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

© 2017 by Annah Matthews.  All rights reserved.

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Originally published Monday, 08 May 2017.