The Forgotten Mama
Yesterday, we celebrated mamas across the country. We bought flowers, bought and made cards, had special meals and celebrated the mamas in our lives. I personally had four little handmade, handprint cards from each of my babies. The day was simple, special, filled with thoughtfulness and spent with the ones I love most… perfection.
Last night, I laid awake and thought of you. I just gave birth to my fourth child. As I held him in my arms and nursed him, hoping all the moments like these would drag on rather than flash past, I thought of you. I have met so many women like you. The women who are forgotten on your birthdays, forgotten on the holidays and often just forgotten. Night after night you give yourself in ways we can’t imagine. Regardless of the occasion you give.
I just want to say you are seen. I see you and my heart celebrates your life. A life worth celebrating, a life worth acknowledging. A life that is beautiful because it has value because you are you.
I met you two years ago on the streets of Las Vegas. You were beautiful and your spirit was full of fire. You had only given birth to your second child a couple weeks before, but you were out there giving yourself. You said you were providing the only way you knew how. You talked about how “your man” said this was where your value was and you needed to work that. You talked about how it was especially hard, because you were trying to nurse and having to be out all night. How it was hard because you hadn’t even recovered from giving birth to your son. You tried to laugh and make a joke of it, but I’m sure your heart was aching. Mine was. Then you showed me pictures of your beautiful boy.
You loved that boy! You couldn’t quite be sure who his father was and you would probably never know, but he was yours. That’s what mattered to you.
I gave you flowers that day and told you it was “because you matter”. I told you that you are loved. I wonder if you believed me that night. My heart meant it with all sincerity.
Yesterday, you didn’t get flowers. I wonder if your kids are still with you? I wonder if you had to spend the night giving yourself? I wonder if you are in jail? Alive? Healthy? Safe???? I wonder if anyone purchasing you last night hesitated with the thought of your motherhood.
I will pray for you. I will think of you often and I will tell your story; the only gift I can offer. I sacrifice so much as a mom, but you give more. You give what’s not fair to ask of you. I pray one day you find freedom. I pray one day you are safe. I pray one day you can celebrate and I pray one day you truly believe in the value your life carries.
Dear Mama, today you are not forgotten. You are in my thoughts. You are beautiful, you are acknowledged, you are appreciated, you are loved.