Karen & Kurt 
Edgewood in St. Denis

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Smart Woman

Mother's Day - or not

Posted by karenandkurt on May 9, 2011 at 2:59 PM

So let me tell you about my Mother’s Day:


My mom lives in Florida, so I can't celebrate with her. Cards, phone calls and a box of chocolate covered fruit delivered a day late have to suffice.


My husband’s family are truly lovely people and I am fortunate to share holidays with them.  But celebrating with them makes me very aware that I am not with my family. My sister also celebrates with her husband’s family, so I don’t get to see her on most holidays. My brother moved his family to Illinois, and I don't understand why.


At Mass on Sunday there were applause, prayers and blessings for all the mothers in the parish. I sat alone, childless, in the back, very aware that I likely will never be among them.


A baby rabbit, too young to open his eyes, died in my backyard while I sat with him because his own mother rabbit – who entered the yard no less than three times – did nothing to take him back to the rabbit nest and save his life. His best chance was his mother and she did nothing. Our backyard is now a rabbit-free zone because I will kick the furry tail of any rabbit that come in there.


I’m not some bitter woman who hates Mother’s Day because I don’t have children. I’m not asking for recognition that isn’t mine or that I don’t deserve. I have been blessed to have a wonderful Mom and a delightful mother-in-law. I am fortunate to have four godchildren – one niece and three nephews – though I suspect their parents don’t see it as anything more than a nice honor, rather than a life-long promise I take seriously to support them and their parents spiritually and, if ever called on, physically. While my sister and sister-in-law were so kind to have the kids send me Happy Mother’s Day to my Aunt cards, I don’t get to see my godchildren on Mother’s Day or most holidays. They are someone else’s children, not mine.


This is the first Mother’s day that has truly been hard for me.  In the past seven months I have had to deal with a cancer diagnosis and surgeries and having my ob/gyn say we are past watchful waiting on the fibroid, but cancer treatment and follow-up come first. She says “when I’m ready” she is recommending a myoectomy or hysterectomy. I am now working with a naturopathic doctor to address this issue – good news, my symptoms have improved when the ob said she couldn’t do anything for me. But the final answer has not been concluded and surgery is still a possibility.


I had three doctors tell me not to get pregnant and one tell me that I cannot even if we tried.


It’s hard because the windows are closing and I am outside of the possibilities. It’s hard because my friends have children and people ask us, the newlyweds, when we will, too. It’s hard because I have few people I can talk with about this and few people who understand. It’s hard because I did everything “right:” career, husband before “kids.”


I found the man I would like to be the father of my children. But Mom, I’m sorry, you were wrong: There isn’t “time for that” where children were concerned. My time is running out and may already be gone.


I am not going to church next Mother’s Day. I barely made it out of there without my heart breaking and I won’t do that to myself again.



Categories: Deep Thoughts

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1 Comment

Reply Rachel
2:37 PM on July 28, 2011 
Hi Karen, I just came across your blog - I hope that you are feeling well and that the cancer diagnosis is under control. I haven't spoken with you since the honeymoon. I am also sorry to see that you are struggling with fibroids. I have had 2 surgeries this year for mine and the issues continue so I feel your pain with them. What kind of fibroid are you dealing with?
just sending my best and I hope we'll be in touch.
Rachel Jay