Bouquets of flowers. Hallmark Cards. Exuberant social media posts with photos of beaming mothers holding their newborns — some taken thirty years ago, some thirty minutes ago.
Mother’s Day is not a day many typically associate with pain and loss.
But for women battling infertility, the open and seemingly unavoidable celebration of motherhood can reopen wounds both fresh and old.
It’s important to take care of yourself as you work to build your family. One way to do that is to proactively plan how you’ll spend certain holidays that make it a little harder to fight this battle. Another is to connect with others who are going through the same thing, or have been in your shoes before.
So we asked our Instagram community for their best tips on how to survive Mother’s Day, and here’s what they said.
1. Keep yourself busy.
Mother’s Day is not a day to sit around the house — not only because of what the day celebrates, but what day of the week it falls on! The “Sunday scaries” can be quite real for many of us. To combat this and brighten your mood, be proactive.
Before the day arrives, make a plan for how you’ll spend it.
If you normally spend Sundays at home doing chores or preparing for the week ahead, do those things ahead of time and plan a jam-packed day of fun activities instead. From the time you wake up until you go to bed, have something planned that you enjoy, and ideally with other people (socially distanced, of course!). Include your partner in your plans too, unless you need a break for some “me” time.
The key is to keep moving. Staying busy and making conversation will help keep your mind so occupied you won’t even notice what day it is!
2. Indulge in fun self-care.
We’ve often said that self-care isn’t really about massages or bubble baths — it’s about doing things your future self will thank you for, even if they’re not fun in the moment. Think: going to bed early. Drinking enough water. Exercise.
Well, today, you can forget all that. This is your permission slip for a day of fun, indulgent self-care!
If it feels like a chore, save it for another day. Instead, choose fun activities you can do safely that make you feel happy, light and free.
Extra points if it’s something you won’t be able to easily do later on in your fertility journey or once you’ve grown your family. You may as well make the most of your present situation, even if you wish things were different.
3. Stay off social media, at all costs.
Multiple Instagram users provided this tip. Message received!
This Mother’s Day, don’t check those DMs. Don’t open your social media apps, especially Facebook or Instagram. Don’t even turn on your phone, if you can help it!
There’s no reason to subject yourself to the litany of Mother’s Day social posts that await you in your newsfeed.
Checking social media is a habit that’s often hard to break, and push notifications from social apps don’t help. Try at least putting your phone in Airplane Mode, or adjust your phone’s screen time or app limit settings so that you’re effectively locked out from social media for the day.
However you choose to spend the day, care for yourself and protect your emotional health.
Hopefully soon, you’ll have a different reason to celebrate yourself on Mother’s Day. But until then, why wait? You’re already worth celebrating now. So take the day to enjoy yourself and be with people who love you.