How to Manage Mother's Day When You're Struggling with Infertility and/or Loss
Mother's day is filled with joy, happiness and love for many. However, for those trying to conceive, those who struggle with infertility and loss, it's a painful reminder of what they don't have. If you're dreading the upcoming Mother's day, here's a few suggestions to keep in mind to help you get through it:
How do I deal with infertility on Mother's Day?
1. Acknowledge how you feel
I know this sounds obvious, but it can be hard to do. It's not uncommon for people to keep busy and distract themselves, trying to keep certain emotions at bay. Emotions like sadness, anger, hopelessness, and jealousy. However, it is important to slow things down for a little bit and pay attention to these feelings inside of you. Label them. Let them be there, without judgment or the need to change them. Trying to get rid of, or avoid a feeling keeps us stuck. In the end, these feelings are valid and understandable. Acknowledging what's happening is the first step to let it go.
2. Take a social media break.
Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram will be filled with pictures of children and families, grafts made by children, words of gratitude, and other very difficult posts for someone trying to conceive or with a history of loss. Take a break for a few days. Make a conscious decision to stay away from the triggers, you don’t need them right now.
3. Do something for yourself
Being on the fertility journey is exhausting. Take extra care of yourself on that day. Make plans to do something that brings you joy, happiness, or peace. Planning a few things so that you have something to look forward to. Some ideas include:
Sleep in and spend the morning in your PJs
Buy fresh flowers for yourself
Treat yourself with a delicious desert
Soak in a bubble bath while reading something enjoyable
4. Practice self-compassion
I believe that self-compassion is one of the most important skills in life. It's the act of inviting empathy, kindness, and love inwards. Is it easy to do? Not always. It is needed? Yes, most of the time! Especially on Mother's day. As the day approaches, and especially on the day of, I invite you to be gentle with yourself, and let go of the judgments, expectations, and critical self-talk. Be mindful of your thoughts, and talk to yourself like you would talk to a good friend, to someone you love.
5. Connect with someone
You might want to reach out to someone you value. It may be most meaningful for you to connect with a family member, your parents, sibling, or an aunt. Or it may be best for you to turn to a friend or your spouse. No matter who it is, the idea is to spend a moment with someone that brings comfort, and understanding. With the right support, things are always a bit more tolerable.
I know that Mother's day is a tough day for you trying to conceive, or grieving a loss. You will probably feel a lot of emotions, and it makes sense. I do hope that these few suggestions can bring a bit of relief.