Mother's Day now holds a special meaning for me, and it brings a greater meaning to living a life in recovery. That’s because without my recovery, I wouldn’t have been able to be there for my mom when she was sick and needed me.
For the last two months of my mother’s life, I took care of her every day. It nearly killed me to watch her be in so much pain. But the experience also brought peace and comfort to my heart, knowing that when she took her last breath, she went to heaven proud of me, trusting me, and loving me. And that is the one thing that will get me through each and every future Mother's Day.
This year, Mother’s Day will be difficult, as it will be the first one since my mom’s passing on January 18, 2021. My mom was the strongest, bravest woman I know, battling cancer for over two years. Her endless courage and hope kept her fighting until she just couldn’t fight anymore.
People say I have that kind of strength, too. Strength to make it through anything life throws at me, including the strength to take back my life, which had seemingly been destroyed from years of meth use. My substance use disorder also destroyed my relationship with my mom for a long time.
When I found recovery, I worked so hard to rebuild our relationship. In April 2019, I got the phone call that I struggled to understand: how had her cancer returned? I tried to understand why this had to happen to my mom who was loved by so many people and who helped so many people, including me. The thought of losing my mom again, after I just got her back, created a fear I can't even describe.
This year, Mother’s Day will be different. With faith, hope and love though, I will celebrate being a mom, as I have one amazing son. And I will honor and remember my mom, always and forever.
Anne Emerson is a Shatterproof Ambassador based in Minnesota. Want to join us? Learn about the program and apply today.