As Mother's Day approaches I have noticed more and more that it is normal in our "social" society for there to be articles, tweets, and blog posts reminding people to be kind. "Give grace." they say.
This year on Mother's Day my plan is to give grace to those that may not understand what it feels like to be a bereaved parent. I think it is important to give grace whether you are the friend of someone that has experienced this tragedy or the parent that lost their child. I plan to be intentional about responding with grace this Mother's Day. This doesn't mean that I won't acknowledge Charlie or kindly correct those that leave him out, it just means that I will not be offended. I will not be disappointed.
When the person walking right next to me at church sees the twins running wild through the hall and says, "How perfect, you have twins and one of each!" I am going to smile and give her grace because what she doesn't know is that I have three perfect children, all three made in the image of their Father.
When the aisle of cards at Target just can't capture what I want it to say for my dear friend, I am going to pick up a box of blank stationary and give the card companies grace because they don't want to say or do the wrong thing; a lot like some of our closest friends.
When people tiptoe around me and avoid saying Charlie's name for fear of the emotion it may evoke, I am going to smile and give them grace because what they don't realize is that I adore hearing his name and those tears come regardless of what they say.
When a friend says, "At least you have the twins here with you to celebrate..." I am going to smile and give her grace because she has no idea how one or more of my children will never replace my baby in heaven.
When no one is willing to sit in my "mourning booth" on this holiday we call "Mother's Day" I am going to smile and give them grace because the day should be celebrated. Mothers should be honored and acknowledged.
How will you give grace? Will you watch over the bereaved parent? Will you kindly acknowledge the children that have graced the angels presence? Maybe you are the bereaved parent; maybe you need to give grace as well. I am going to try this Mother's Day and keep in mind that most everyone I come in contact with has good intentions. They aren't purposely avoiding Charlie. They don't realize what it feels like because their children are very much alive and they are celebrating this side of heaven, as they should be.