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EMOTIONAL ABSENCE

How Do I Say Good-bye to the Mother I Never Had?

by Maya (Guest writer)

I dreamed of having a mom I could always call. Always go home to. The sound of a warm voice on the other end of the phone saying, “I love you, daughter. I can’t wait for us to spend time together!” The pain of this unfulfilled dream increases with the holidays.

For some, the colors of fall mark the beginning of planning family gatherings. For me, it begins an annual waiting game. Would I have anywhere to go?

My first mom gave me away. My second died of cancer. My third has walls like a fortress that keep love from getting in or coming out. This year, her only words to me were the cold declaration of why I wasn’t invited. Last year she ghosted me. Sometimes I think that the holiday season is a wilderness every motherless daughter walks through. We avoid talking about it, but we still hunger for that safe connection with our mom.

So how do I say goodbye to the mother I never had?

This morning I found myself drawn to Deuteronomy 8:3. These were the words Jesus quoted while in His own wilderness.

Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.

I immediately put my Bible down and asked myself, “If I’m hungering, does that mean I’m feeding off something other than His word? Have my longings become a weight holding me back? Am I so fixated on what’s not there that I’m rejecting what is?” It was something I needed to ponder.

Releasing the dream has felt impossible. The dream of having a physically and emotionally present mom to spend the holidays with. The dream of having a safe home I can always go back to. The dream of knowing that I’m wanted, loved and cherished by my mom. The rejection grips tight.

So today I asked God to give me a new dream. I asked Him to replace what I didn’t have with what He did have for me. In that prayer I found a gentle quieting in my heart. I felt the tender reassurance that I always have a place at His table. He chooses me to be His daughter and puts His name on me. I do belong. His love towards me is firmly in place. I can boldly declare these as absolute truths no matter how things look or feel.

This year, I’m not entering into the holiday season from a place of starvation. Instead of fixating on the feeling of not belonging, I’m putting my eyes on The One I belong to. He’s not just a father to the fatherless. He’s also a mother to the motherless. With that thought I picked my Bible back up and began again to drink the milk of His Word.

8 replies on “How Do I Say Good-bye to the Mother I Never Had?”

WOW!!! What beautiful healing has taken place in you! Everything you said is so true as far as the holidays are for a motherless daughter. I have felt all of them. You said so many good things that I had never thought of. I’m going to ask God for a new dream myself. I get so tired of all the “family” things on TV and from friends. Why don’t they remember that I don’t have any family and not talk about theirs? You think they would if they really loved me and didn’t want to hurt me. But they don’t . They haven’t experienced my hurt so they don’t think anything of it. I love your idea of being fixated on what you don’t have and forgetting what you do have. I am also going to ponder that. It’s definitely worth my time. I love your idea of asking God for a new dream. I’m also going to put my eyes on The One I belong to. Thanks for sharing your heart and your new way of looking at your life. You are an inspiration and such a blessing!!! Love you.

Thanks, Cathy! I feel like the change in perspective (in how I’m approaching things) is also changing how I’m experience things. It’s liberating. I love you, too!

What a beautiful testimony! My relationship with my Mother was beautiful and God-filled and God-led even now that she has gone home to be with Him. But I never had a father, from the very start. Yet I never missed Him because I knew I always had my Heavenly Father who loved me always and who is with me always. This is so important for those to know, especially those with distant or no parents, that “When my father and my mother forsake me, then the Lord will take me up.” Psalm 27:10. Amen!

It sounds like your mom gave you a really strong foundation. That’s so precious and beautiful! Psalm 27:10 is such a powerful word — Especially for motherless (or fatherless) daughters. Thank you for sharing!

Maya, I love the way you go to Abba to seek guidance, understanding, and love. When you write and ponder the answers, I wonder if others are asking the same questions? Your courage to speak it so that others can see is a blessing.
Please keep sharing.

Thanks, Penny! I think asking the hard questions is part of healing. The conclusions may be a little different for everyone because each have our own unique story of mother-loss…But that’s the journey.

Maya,
I’m so sorry for your losses and pain. Your light you are spreading in sharing your story is one of so much HOPE, like this first week of Advent. Light on the reminder to simply treat all with extra kindness, we do not know what someone else may be going through. Light on the way of seeking out answers in God’s word and time listening to Him. Light on hungering. My spirit is rejoicing with you on receiving a new dream. Praying continued peace and joy over you in this season.

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