Five Times a Mother

Five Times a Mother

By Susan Swander

For one of God’s unknown reasons, one day in the dead of winter I started thinking about May, spring and Mother’s Day.  Then, I started writing.

I am a mother – five times.  Luke, Grace, Timothy, Teresa and Benjamin are my children.  One is living, and four are with God.

I have a hole in my heart for my 4 deceased children.  I aborted three of them and miscarried one.  Acknowledging them, naming them and accepting their forgiveness has made me a better person, woman and mother for my living son.

For many moms with an abortion in their past, Mother’s Day is a difficult day.  It reminds us of our losses, of the children we could have had.  It can bring up our guilt and shame.  I have had several very tough Mother’s Days.

We all know how hard it is for parents to lose a child.  They grieve; we grieve with them.  Mothers who have aborted a child have lost a child, too.  But no one allows them to grieve.  Yes, we decided to abort our child, but that does not lessen our loss or our grief.

Many mothers simply stuff the grief – some (like me) for years.  Only hope and healing learned through a Rachel’s Vineyard abortion healing retreat is allowing me to finally grieve my children.  Thank God for this.

This year I am choosing to celebrate Mother’s Day and my motherhood.  I am going to make it a day to honor all five of my children.  There is a spot in my yard aching for a “Children’s Garden.” I will offer my Mother’s Day Mass for my five children and in gratitude for being a mother.  I may try to get my living son to go out with me for a Mother’s Day brunch.  Who knows what else?

If you know a mother who has suffered the loss of a child through abortion, would this Mother’s Day be a good time to acknowledge her motherhood and her loss?  Maybe she just needs some help from a friend like you to begin her healing journey.

In our Blessed Mother Mary’s name, I wish all mothers a very happy Mother’s Day.


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