The Secret Mom Clubs
The past couple weeks I have had memories coming through on Facebook of all of the tragedy of last fall. This is something I have been dreading, because I relive the nightmare enough already. Though I thought I explained everything thoroughly, the posts aren’t nearly as traumatic as I remember. Apparently, I sugar coated much more than I thought I did. Because some days, the memories still haunt me.
When you become a mom for the first time, you have this picture in your head of how you’ll join this tribe of fierce women who fearlessly protect their young. You’ll become a momma bear just from the sheer act of giving birth. You’ll be a member in all sorts of silent “clubs.” Girl mom. Boy mom. Mom of three kids. Stay at home mom. Working mom. Homeschool mom. Soccer mom. But you never imagine you’ll become part of the other kind of clubs. The kind no one wants to mention. The kind no one wants to join, and yet no one can leave once they do. Miscarriage mom. Special needs mom. Mom of vaccine damaged kid. Tragedy mom. Moms who lost kids. They just aren’t part of the dream when you become a mom, and in your head, that will never be you. But then something happens and you join one of those clubs. And your life changes. You try to get back to normal and only change what little has to change, but the truth is, you never come back the same. You’re like a warrior who has seen battle, and you can’t unsee it. My husband and I have fought endlessly about how I never came home from the hospital. The *me* he knew left on the helicopter with our son, and this new, jaded, damaged, more callous version of me came back, wary from the battle. People tell me to just let it go, and some days, I really wish I could. But I just can’t even explain how heavy it all still is on my soul. How do you let something so dramatic go like it never happened? A couple weeks ago, someone I admire very much, who has had a great impact on shaping my spiritual walk, and whose wife always had such grace that I WISHED I could be like her, reached out to me to tell me how impressed he was with how I’d handled the hand I was dealt, as a wife, as a mom and as a child of God. I was honestly startled. Most days, I’m not sure if I’ve handled it at all. Little things like paint hand prints on the one year anniversary, from hands that we weren’t sure he’d have both of, draw me to tears. And yet, somehow, from an outside perspective, I’ve handled it with the grace I had always hoped to have. I was told that I inspire him to live out his faith. All the while I feel like I’m miserably failing. Coming from someone who has been so influential to me, it was quite the complement.
And yet, this post isn’t to toot my own horn. Because in the midst of these long days, (and yet ever so short years) I struggle just like anyone else. And some days hurt like I’m still standing there battling doctors. Some days I don’t even want to let him or any of my kids out of sight for a single second. Some days, I could drown in tears.
If you’re part of one of these silent clubs, I see you. I feel you. You are not alone. This silent club that we have all joined has changed us, and hopefully, just maybe, some strength will come out of it and we all will become those fierce momma bears. Maybe one day we will all look back and be able to help other wary warrior moms trudge through the battle, and tell them that in spite of their doubts, they are doing just fine and handling it well.
If you missed the events of last fall, read about them here: