Celebrate all mothers on Mothers' Day - even those who children have not yet arrived or have already left them.

This Mothers’ Day, Acknowledge Infertility

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Categories Infertility, Mothers' Day, Perspective

For American Mothers’ Day 2006, I received the most wonderful gift: two 3-day-old daughters, doing better than anyone imagined they could, having been born at 33 weeks gestation.

Sadia with her newborns in the NICU. You'd never guess 9 years later that they had a rough start at 33 weeks gestation.

A week from today, on Mothers’ Day 2015, those tiny babies turn 9 years old. Halfway to college.

J and M in their dance attire. You'd never guess they were 7 weeks premature.

Motherhood has been more than I could have ever imagined. More joyous. More fulfilling. Surprisingly, easier than I expected.

There are many others out there, men and women alike, who have planned to have children, only to encounter the monster that is infertility. They would love to be celebrating Mothers’ Day with a child, but have faced obstacle after obstacle in making that child a reality.

Last year, we ran a series called (In)Fertility Tales. I encourage you to read these stories to understand the variety of challenges would-be parents face and how you can help. Hear from the blogger who explains why she remains anonymous when addressing the topic and the news anchor who had her whole community watching as she carried triplets, only to lose two of them.

I echo Angela‘s challenge to you from her post Honoring Moms Who Aren’t: Remembering the Bereaved or Infertile. This Mothers’ Day, don’t just honour those mothers whose children are with us. Remember too those who lost their children or are still waiting for them.

My tiny step to this end was to ask the church pastor’s wife to see whether “mothers at heart” could be given roses this coming Sunday, not just those who the outside world perceives as mothers. Let the roses be a balm and not a thorn, adding to the pain of infertile would-be mothers and loss moms.

Celebrate all mothers on Mothers' Day - even those who children have not yet arrived or have already left them.

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Sadia (rhymes with Nadia) has been coordinating How Do You Do It? since late 2012. She is the divorced mother of 10-year-old monozygotic twins, M and J. They live in the Austin, TX suburbs, where Sadia works full time in information technology. She contributes to a number of parenting websites and magazines and also runs The Mommy Blogging Guide, where she answers mommy bloggers' technical questions.

37 thoughts on “This Mothers’ Day, Acknowledge Infertility”

    1. And thank you for stopping by. People tell me I’m strong for being a single mother of twins, but I don’t know that I would have the strength to bear the loss of a child.

  1. This post speaks to me, as a mum of 3 amazing children and 3 angels in Heaven. My children who the world does not see will forever remain in my heart, I miss them so much. I am blessed to have my 3 children who are here with me, but that does not mean my other 3 are forgotten. A fantastic post. #Twinkly Tuesday

    1. Although I never dealt with infertility myself, it’s impossible to be part of the twin community and now know about it.

  2. This is such a great post! I only wrote yesterday about Mother’s Day from the perspective of not having a mum to celebrate since mine passed away 17 years ago (have linked up for #twinklytuesday!). But I also went through a time reflection prior to having my girls through IVF where I wondered if I would ever be a mum myself and what mother’s day would be like – thankfully, that’s not how my story unfolded but I empathise deeply with those who are in that situation or who have lost bubbas and aren’t considered ‘Mums’ simply because their child/ren aren’t with them anymore. I don’t think that many people understand that Mother’s Day is not a Hallmark card for everyone. Great post!
    Nardia – rhymes with Nadia :)

    1. About your name – do people mispronounce it all the time? I added the pronunciation note when a blog-friend I’d had for years confessed that she wasn’t sure how my name was pronounced!

      It’s easy, I think, to assume that everyone’s situation is the same as our own. I think it’s important to remind people of those who suffer invisibly and silently. I’m so sorry that you suffered the loss of your mother. I can’t even imagine.

      1. Ha ha! I can’t tell you how many people, after being introduced as Nardia, will call me Narelle, Mardi or Marnie!!! Interestingly I find men always spell it with the ‘r’ and women always revert back to the more common Nadia – I think the spelling always throws people a bit :)

    1. And thank you for stopping by! I think it’s important to stop and realize how lucky we are to have our kids every day!

    1. I don’t think I realized that had been part of your journey. You really have been through the wringer, but manage to have such a positive attitude!

  3. Such a lovely reminder, I have friends going through IVF and who have been blessed but it is a long rocky road, I equally have friends who have come to the end of their journey and they must not be forgotten either.


    1. I agree. I think it’s important to acknowledge all the mothering that happens even from people who aren’t technically mothers. Aunts, neighbours, teachers can all fulfill a mother role to many, many children.

    1. Today was particularly poignant, since I learned that a friend lost a pregnancy a few hours ago. It’s just tragic, and so much more common than most people realize.

  4. My ex and I dealt with infertility and miscarriages for years. It was probably a blessing but it completely drained the relationship. Don’t tell my wife but she crosses my mind on mothers day

    1. That’s very sweet. I’m so sorry that you had to go through that loss. I’ve only experienced it secondhand through friends, but it’s completely devastating.

  5. Aww how tiny were your girls?! They are adorable and you must be so proud. I can’t imagine how hard it must be to deal with infertility at the majority of times but it must be super hard on mothers day. As you know, we have mothers day here in the UK earlier in the year but I definitely saw similar posts about this. It’s important to remember the people that have to deal with this and for anyone who struggles to fall pregnant when they want to. Thanks for linking this up with #TwinklyTuesday hun, and for being a fab co-host :)

  6. Oh that is so lovely. I can’t even begin to imagine how hard Mother’s Day can be for some people but by respecting & honouring that is such a lovely idea #twinklyTuesday

  7. It must be incredibly difficult to have that urge to be a mum and then either face difficulties or losses. I have the utmost respect for women who have to go through this because for most of us, it just happens and is the most natural thing in the world, but for others it’s one of the toughest journeys they’ll face #twinklytuesday xx

  8. I am so grateful to have my two children. I have known many women who have experienced loss and IVF treatment. Children are a gift from god, to be cherished and never taken for granted xx

  9. Great post, I always remind myself how lucky I am to have my daughter, who was conceived so quickly. It must be so difficult to have trouble and I can’t imagine the heartache. #twinklytuesday

    1. Thank you. Yes, I feel like I had it so easy. One try, two babies. It breaks my heart to see my friends suffer.

  10. I’d wanted since I can remember and I always thought it wouldn’t happen it seemed to take ages to get pregnant with my first I can’t even imagine how those feel who cannot have children its heartbreaking your girls are beautiful by the way! #twinklytuesdays

  11. Aaah this is a lovely post. Our mother’s day was in March this year and I wrote something similar; a wish for all the women who are desperately trying to conceive.

    You are so right when you say that infertility is a monster. I battled with that monster for nearly 8 years before I got to hold my babies for the first time. I was so, incredibly, blessed. And I thank my lucky stars every day. It could have been so different — and very nearly was. Thanks for linking this up with #TwinklyTuesday and for being a brilliant co-host :)

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