There’s an unholy trinity, of sorts, that we all know. The three dates on the calendar we all dread: her birthday, the day she died, and Mother’s Day. The first two are yours to cope with any way you’d like; short of a phone call from family or your closest friends, the outside world doesn’t know the significance of the day. You can celebrate, grieve, or simply hide.
On Mother’s Day, though, there’s no hiding. It’s a cruel joke of a parade, amplified tenfold by Facebook and every other stream of media surrounding you—friend after friend singing the praises of their wonderful mother, smiling next to her with mimosas at brunch this morning, telling the world they “don’t know what they would do without her.”
Well, we know what we do without her. We wander, we seethe, and we grieve. We harbor no ill will towards those lucky enough to brunch with Mom; hell, that was us one, five, ten, or twenty years ago. It’s a beautiful thing to see, the joy of a mother and her children, and seeing beautiful things is never bad; it’s just that now, we’ve been initiated into a club whose entry is as excruciating as it is unwanted. We can’t go back to those days of cards and dinner and visits and an annual recitation of gratitude. We can now only watch stoically or turn away and stay occupied for the day in our well-rehearsed routine of avoidance.