I’m not big on holidays. I mostly miss them because I don’t have reminders set in my calendar. I don’t celebrate holidays because they are painful. They are filled with heartache, violence, betrayal, and loss.
So instead of taking myself through that particular Hell, I simply don’t celebrate them.
But there are a couple of holidays that matter enough to me to go through the memories of the past to acknowledge and appreciate other human beings without which, I would not be alive.
Mother’s Day is one of those holidays.
I have two mothers: the woman who gave me life ( I call her “Momma”) and the woman who saved my life (I call her “Nanna.”) Both of these forces of nature walked me across stage when I graduated from Stanford University with my MA/Ph.D. Both have loved me with all they had. And both have shaped me into the woman I am today.
There’s a lot I could say about each of my mothers. But I won’t. What I will say is this: love comes in many forms. Some harsh. Some helpful. Some cruel. Some kind. Some wounding. Some redemptive.
No matter the form, I know this truth as surely as I know the sun rises in the East:
I. Have. Been. Loved.
Love is imperfect and messy. It’s not always nice and there are times that the way a person expresses love feels like hate. Trust me on this: I know. It has taken decades to see the love in Momma’s actions without sugarcoating the devastation of it.
It has taken just as many decades to let Nanna’s demanding rigor and selfless love reimagine me and walk in her vision of who I can be. Ironically Nanna’s love has been the hardest to allow. To this day, I still wonder why and how she could love someone as wounded as me.
Without Judas, there could be no Jesus.
No new life.
Without Momma, there would be no Nanna. Not for me…
So as I prepare for the next season of expansion in my life, I’m clear God gave me both mothers for my destiny. They are the flip side of the same coin: God’s will for my life.
Today, I send a prayer up to both of my mothers. A prayer of gratitude and love.
I love you, Momma.
I love you, Nanna.
Thank you for giving me life and for saving my life. I love you both with my whole heart. In different ways, yes, but no less true. You both have my respect, admiration, and love.
INVITATION: Sis, if you have had a complicated, hurtful, or difficult relationship with the woman you call mother, it’s time to forgive her. You will never be able to fulfill your destiny or have great relationships with other women (including your daughters) until you take on healing your relationship with your mom. It’s the core of who you are—intentionally or reactionary.
My money transformed when I walked in Momma’s shoes and saw her as a person instead of a parent who had failed me. If you truly want to win in life, to live free, fulfilled, and loved, healing your relationship with your mom is essential.
I know because I have, and now I create my life instead of living at the effect of my mother’s wounds.
You can can too.