Dealing with Grief on Mother’s Day
In the UK, Mothering Sunday falls on the fourth Sunday of Lent. It was traditionally a day when children (mainly daughters) would be given the day off (usually from domestic service) to go and visit their mother.
We often now call Mothering Sunday Mother’s Day and use it as an opportunity to meet with our mothers and families, and thank them for the care they have given us. If you are grieving for your mum, grandma or an important female figure in your life, Mother’s Day can feel very difficult. Whether your loved one died a while ago, or this is your first Mother’s Day without her, it’s ok to recognise how hard this day could be.
Other people might be going ahead with plans to celebrate Mother’s Day, and adverts are covered in bunches of flowers and happy families, but your pain is real and valid. Here at St Wilfrid’s Hospice, we understand that grief changes over time and we encourage you to think about how you can be kind to yourself this Mother’s Day:
- Consider that everyone is different, and your loved ones or siblings might not deal with grief in the same way you do. Be open and say something like,’ I’d like to raise a glass to Mum at lunchtime and share our favourite memories’. Say her name, and talk about what you love about her. If you find talking about her difficult, you can say, ‘I will find that hard, so I’m going to step out at that point and collect my thoughts while I remember Mum’.
- Do something active that reminds you of special times together. Maybe you could go on a walk you both enjoyed, visit a special place with a view you both liked, dance to some music you both loved, or make a special dish that reminds you of her.
- If you have younger children in your family, encourage them to draw a picture, say her name, and share photos of her with them if you have any. Make new memories in her name.
- If you have other women in your family to celebrate on Mother’s Day, that’s ok. You aren’t taking anything away from your Mum by celebrating those who are still with you. Choose flowers or a plant for your windowsill to remind you of your Mum, or maybe feed the birds in your garden. Choose something that she would have liked.
- You can make an online dedication on St Wilfrid’s memory wall if you’d like to. Sometimes it helps to be able to write a message to the person you are missing.