Over a decade ago, I used to think about the children I would have, and then have to remind myself that they weren’t coming. These last few months, I have found myself thinking that I need to phone my mother, or worrying that she’ll be too hot, or too cold, or I've found myself feeling that there’s someone else I need to tell about my broken ankle and then figuring out that it would have been her. But of course, I need to remember that she is no longer here.
This year, Mother’s Day is going to have an added bite. I’ve often thought that Mother’s Day must be hard not just for those of us who can’t have children, or those who are going through infertility and are fearing that they won’t have children, but also for those who are adopted, or estranged from their mothers, or are resentful that they have to care for their mothers, or have never known a mother’s love, or for those who have recently lost their mothers. I've been well aware how hard Mother's Day can be for women who couldn't have children, although in recent years have felt the sting of this ease. In fact, this year I haven't been worried about it for that reason. No, this year I’ll find out how it feels, at the opposite end of the spectrum.
But I know, in so many ways, that I’m lucky that I had a good relationship with my mother. I am grateful for that. I’m lucky too that I’ve come to terms with my life, and accept that there are many reasons to be grateful for it, and the people in it, regardless of whether I’m a mother or not. This Mother’s Day, that will be enough.