Saturday, May 8, 2010

Happy Birthmother's Day!

I first heard of Birthmother's Day when Colin was 1. I believe it was his mom that told me about it and recognized me on that day for the first time. I was ecstatic. I felt so honored, and appreciated to have my own day. Mother's Day was so hard, I loved having a day that was mine, that honored the sacrifice and bittersweet feelings of being a birthmom. I saw it as an example of how far we've come wrt birthparenthood, and not asking us to just "get on with our lives". It was one way to integrate this experience and carry it with us as we continued our lives.

I've heard from some birthmother's that they find Birthmother's Day kind of offensive. That it separates us from "real" mothers, or excludes us from the "real" holiday. It never occurred to me to think of it like that, but I can see why some do. Although, I'm sure whomever started Birthmother's Day did it with intention of making us feel loved, and not excluded. I've chosen to just take it as a really nice gesture.

To me, we are different. The hardest part of Mother's Day (before Jeb) was that I felt kind of like a mother. I felt like I was in the club, but didn't have an invitation. At Mother's Day lunches, I felt like I was crashing the party. No one really knew what to say to me. I could see in their eyes that they remembered, and I felt bad for making their celebration uncomfortable.

My family has always been terrific about including me as a mother on Mother's Day, and of course I always appreciate it, but I like that Birthmother's Day feels more honest.

That's just me, though. I think that women should celebrate/recognize/honor whatever feels most comfortable for them. There are so many emotional stages of birthmotherhood; I've needed very different things in different years.

So, I hope everyone has a great weekend, whatever you are celebrating!

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