My name is Carissa.
I’m 38 years old and I still sleep with a blankie.
Did your mother say you can’t take it to college?
Well, my mother is not here so I did.
Which is why I still sleep with a blankie most nights.
And it’s also why it’s really hard for me not to say Mother’s Day sucks. I tell myself, “this you’re not going to break down and cry. It’s been 25 years. Get over it.” I try really hard to not succumb to sadness and depression on this day or all the other days that make me miss my mom. Like my birthday, my kids birthdays, her birthday, Christmas, Easter, Fourth of July, my wedding day, my 20th anniversary, or pretty much any day ending in the letter “y.”
I try really hard to be content with what I have, and join in with all the festivities of this day. I try really hard to paint a grateful picture for my kids that their pictures, cards, gifts, and hugs are enough. I try really hard to smile and nod in agreement for every sermon I’ve heard in the past 25 years honoring mothers. I try really hard to reach out to single moms, moms who have lost their moms, moms whose babies have gone to heaven and make them feel loved on this day I don’t care for. I try to make the phone calls to the family members that I didn’t send a card. I don’t like that aisle in the store. I try to keep busy on this day because if I slow down I’ll hear a song, have a memory, feel an emotion that I can’t contain. I keep my words of advice short and to the point for those who ask how I’ve overcome losing my mom early in my life. I try not to be bitter. I try not to still question God and his sovereignty after all these years. I try not to let the desire of my heart dictate who I am.
I try to control the tightening of my chest that keeps my breaths short today.
I try to control the wound in my heart from seeping into my mind.
So I sleep with a blankie. And I try to pull from the depths of my memories my mother’s voice and her cool touch as she rubbed my back as I would fall asleep wrapped in the blankie she made. I try to find the peace of an innocent child who has never known pain or abandonment or deep seeded sadness. I try to be who God intended me to be without my mother.