Losing your mom will wreck you.

It breaks you and changes you in ways you never could have imagined.

You’ll find yourself keeping her a secret because talking about her hurts everyone else, even though not talking about her hurts you so much. You want to say her name, you want someone to ask you about her, you want to talk about her, but it feels like you are the only one.

It’s as if you’ll lose yourself while you are standing right there. You’ll look for yourself in old pictures and try to remember where that girl went, the person you were when she was still here, and wonder if you’ll ever get that person back.

Losing your mom will make you become a different wife, mom, sister, daughter, and best friend.

You’ll go from being the one who didn’t question much in life to the one who questions everything. Where is my mom? Where did she go? Why did it have to be my mom? Why did she have to go? Why didn’t we get to say goodbye? Why can’t she come for a visit? You won’t want it to have been anyone else’s mom, but you’ll wonder why yours had to die that way.

It will change the way you visit the doctor; sitting in the lobby there will be hard. You’ll think of her at every visit. You’ll wonder if this visit will be a bad one for you like it was for her. The paperwork will make you cry when it asks for emergency contacts or if your mom is living.

It will make that random corner on the bathroom floor become a place that houses so many memories. The place you held her head back when she was sick; the place you said countless prayers with no words while she sat on that floor by your side. Where you sat praying you could keep her for the night. The last place you held her hand.

It will make you realize that sometimes, friendships can’t withstand everything and losing your mom might be one of those things. You’ll learn that you will have to give people grace in the middle of your grief because that’s what a good friend does.

In losing your mom, you’ll find feeling alone is only temporary because others just like you will come out and say, “I’ve been there,” and, “I’m here for you now.”

In losing her, you will see the ugly side of this life. You’ll see the hurt and the grief and you won’t be able to unsee it ever again. But in that, you will find the helpers, the ones who love without conditions. You’ll find the ones who have experienced the same grief and are still out there finding the beauty in this life.

It will cause you to constantly search for her everywhere. You’ll search the clouds, old pictures, social media posts, the memories of her old friends, and even the crowds wherever you go. Even though you know she’s gone, your heart will still search for her, still keep trying to find her. You’ll want to put up missing person flyers and spread the word on social media to be on the lookout for her, too, but you can’t because she’s not that kind of missing person.

Losing your mom will wreck you in the most heartbreaking ways, but it’s in that mess of grief that you’ll find who you were made to be.

You’ll discover with the wrecking of your old self that came with losing your mom also came the unfolding of you, the you your mom always knew you would become even if she wasn’t there to see it.

This post originally appeared on Grief To Hope with Nikki Pennington

 
So God Made a Mother book by Leslie Means

If you liked this, you'll love our new book, SO GOD MADE A MOTHER available now!

Order Now

Nikki Pennington

Nikki is a stay at home mom to three, high spirited boys. Three years ago she became a motherless daughter after losing her own mom to terminal brain cancer. When she is not playing the role of referee for the boys, she spends her days trying to encourage and inspire others that are on the grief journey. Read more from Nikki on her blog: http://www.grieftohope.blogspot.com/

Growing Slowly around the Grief of Losing Your Mom

In: Grief, Loss
Sad woman sitting on couch with folded arms

Everyone has heard about the five stages of grief: denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance. Society often assumes the stages of grief happen in order, but those who encounter grief know that’s not true. Undergoing grief can feel like riding a rollercoaster blindfolded—disorienting and chaotic. There are numerous ups, downs, and twists you wouldn’t anticipate. Grief is like an ocean. When waves come crashing, it feels like you’re being swept away. Regardless of their size, waves are always rough. Despite everything, you also get pushed forward to the shore after every wave. Sometimes, you may feel like you are drowning...

Keep Reading

The Shattering Grief of Suicide

In: Grief, Living, Loss
Sad person sitting in darkened hallway, black and white image

Navigating through my second Christmas without my dad, the weight of grief seemed even heavier this year. In fact, everything felt and looked different to me. As I unwrapped the ornaments and cards he gave me over the years, a tidal wave of madness and sadness engulfed me. I know many feel sadness and grieve during these times, but let me just say . . . suicide is a different type of grief. My vibrant, happy, physically fit dad committed suicide on April 30th, 2022. There, I said it. In the aftermath, a myriad of emotions consumed me. One perplexing...

Keep Reading

Dear Dad, Maybe You’re the Bird

In: Grief, Loss
Young girl sitting on father's lap, older color photo

Maybe you’re the bird. The one I see outside my door. The one who flies so low it seems you’re somehow weighted down. Like you’re carrying more than just yourself. Like you’re carrying a message. Just for me. Maybe you’re the rain. The sound I hear that reminds me so much of home. Of you. Of driving in your car as a little girl when you looked over and asked my opinion about everything. When you made someone so small feel so very big. RELATED: Dad Left a Legacy in Fried Green Tomatoes Maybe you’re the butterfly. The one I...

Keep Reading

I Hope You Never Know What it’s Like to Forget Who You Are

In: Grief, Living, Loss
Woman staring at camera, black-and-white photo

I write best when I’m passionate. It’s always been my release. But lately, I’ve struggled to write. I’ve struggled to find purpose in my words. It’s all been twisted and choppy, not a bit poetic or beautiful. These feelings are what the struggles of loss, parenting, work, and marriage push against. It’s finding yourself over and over again and trying to make sense of the senseless. It leaves you questioning most things and leaves you feeling broken with no idea how to put yourself or others back together. I hope you never know. I hope you never know what it’s...

Keep Reading

I Don’t Know How to Live Without My Sister, But I Must

In: Grief
Sisters smiling in posed color photo

I’ve spent a year of my life living in a haze. Holding my breath, afraid to exhale. Focusing on staying in this frozen moment where there is no reality. I pressed the pause button. Pumped the brakes. I’ll stay right here and wait for my life, life as I knew it, life as I loved it, to come back around. Where there is no future to mourn, thinking about the way it should have been and no torturous past to remember, recalling the horror of that day. The special occasions that will come are now outlined in sadness. Wait, she’s...

Keep Reading

6 Ways to Be a Friend to Someone Grieving

In: Friendship, Grief, Loss
Friends hugging

Grief can truly be such a lonely experience after you lose a loved one. The loneliness isn’t necessarily because you don’t have anyone around you. It’s because only you had your relationship with the person who died, and it’s hard to find anyone to replace that. I have first-hand experience. My mom died recently and unexpectedly at the age of 62 and I at the age of 34, and it single-handedly has been one of the most painful experiences of my life. However, having support from family and friends will help you navigate this difficult time. Without it, the loneliness...

Keep Reading

These Final Gifts from My Mom Are Hard to Let Go

In: Grief, Loss
Little girls boots with worn toes, color photo

My daughter wobbled toward me in silver, square-toed go-go boots, one heel dislodged and flopping against our hallway’s faux wood floor. On her opposite foot, a striped sock peaked curiously through the growing toe hole. “Mama,” she said. Her tiny voice raised another octave, “My shoe!” I sighed, then sat on the floor. Waves of grief washed over me as I contemplated what kind of glue might capably reconstruct the shoe’s sole. Elmer’s glue? Textile glue? Maybe Krazy Glue? I knew the boots should just go into the bin. And yet, they—along with a vibrant, overbearing cat dress that would...

Keep Reading

A Daughter Is Never Ready To Let Her Dad Go

In: Grief, Loss
Grown daughter hugging older man

I wasn’t ready to let you go. When I was a little girl, one of my greatest fears was that something would happen to my parents. If they had to go somewhere, I would nervously follow their route in my mind, mentally noting where they probably were and when they should be back home. If they hadn’t returned by the time I thought they should, my imagination would get the best of me as I pictured a thousand things that could have happened. But the day I sat having a late breakfast at my kitchen table and saw an ambulance...

Keep Reading

Memories of Mom Are Everywhere

In: Grief, Motherhood
Family campsite with bikes, tents, and totes, color photo

Two weeks after my daughter was born, my dad drove from Pennsylvania to our home in Florida to stay with me for the week. I was nursing my daughter on the couch when my dad drug in four humongous plastic storage bins and staged them next to the Pack ‘N Play in the living room. The bins were full of my baby clothes, baby shower cards, a silver spoon, plastic and probably lead-infused rattles, and two cellophane balloons neatly folded. A time capsule of my babyhood. I thought of my mom’s hands being the last to touch these items. Had...

Keep Reading

Don’t Forget the Heartbroken Mothers

In: Grief, Loss, Motherhood
Woman sad sitting on couch

The loss I recently experienced hit differently than others I’ve experienced. I thought that with three kids already in tow, it wouldn’t ache quite this bad. But it has. I don’t know if it’s because I was further along or because my entire household was over-the-top giddy and excited for this precious new life to enter the world. Perhaps it was the trauma of how everything happened or because I actually gave birth to him and held him. RELATED: We Lost Our Baby at 17 Weeks Pregnant Attending my first appointment to confirm the loss was brutal. I was surrounded...

Keep Reading