Birthmother’s Day. It is always the Saturday before Mother’s Day.

A day set aside to honor all the birthmothers.

This day is met with different emotions and different vantage points. As a mother through adoption, I know firsthand how every adoption story is different.

It is unique in its own way because every birth family is different, every child is different, and every adoptive family is different. And the level of connectedness between these three groups of people varies based on the situation.

I would never pretend it is a smooth ride in these complex relationships. But, it is still beautiful and we can still be people who honor.

RELATED: I Chose Adoption For My Baby, But I Didn’t Let Go

And as adoption starts with loss and grief, it also breathes new life into the birth of a new life. A new little person.

And as birth moms give birth . . . they quietly break on the inside.

They mourn. They ponder and wonderall the decisions, all the dreams, and the futurewhat will it be like for their child? What will their child know about them?

In our family, I have often thought about how we can best honor our birthmother.

The way birthmothers sacrifice . . . teaches me to sacrifice. The way they love . . . teaches me to love deeper. Their level of peace and hope in the unknown of their life (and their child’s life) puts me in awe as I watch them trust their own mothering instincts in the midst of the sacrifice.

They remain brave when they are scared. They cling to any sign of hope while feeling hopeless.

Our birthmother is the foundation of our daughter’s life. There will always be a sacred place and a sacred space for her in the legacy of women in our family. Always.

To see our birthmother shine through everything our daughter does is a gift.

We see her in our daughter, and we get to experience a piece of her soul every day.

And that’s one of the greatest treasures. We all get to experience hope, in the form of our daughter, in the midst of her sacrifice.

Our birth mother is in the physical makeup of our daughter. When our daughter’s radiant blue eyes sparkle, we experience her beautiful birth mom’s life. And because those blue eyes shine in wonder, it gives us all life.

RELATED: Acknowledging the Loss in Adoption

She is beneath the talents and passions of our daughter.

I feel her spirit when our daughter spends time doing a passion that gives her soul breath.

She is beneath the words I use to describe my daughter—determined, independent, courageous.

I feel her presence in those defining, adjective-filled moments of parenting.

She showed me what a courageous selfless love would look like. And I chose to honor her in the daily moments, in the big moments, in the hard moments, and in the beautiful moments.

Our birthmother . . .she is the reason I became a mother. And I will be forever grateful to her.

Sue Volikas

I've been married to my high school sweetheart, Tim, for 16 years and became a mom 4.5 years ago through adoption to my adventure seeker, Elle. I'm trying to see the beauty and bright spots in broken places. I write one glimpse at a time about grief and loss, mother-daughter relationships, adoption, and faith.