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Oklahoma Representative Cyndi Munson, House District 85, shares the many complicated feelings she has on Mother’s Day.


I don’t have to check the calendar to know it’s Mother’s Day. I feel it deep in my bones, a heaviness that reminds me of how this day is complicated for me and so many others.

I wonder if it’s the same for her, too.

No Hallmark card could express the sadness, disappointment, and confusion one feels when their mother’s love doesn’t or can’t flow to them. How would you wrap all those big feelings into a few lines of words on a pastel card with flowers and rainbows?

I wonder if she thinks about this, too.

Over the years, my capacity for compassion has grown, but I am still the scared little girl wanting what every little girl wants from their mother: love, unconditional love. Even through all the work and reading all the books on how to exist this way, it’s still difficult. I still distance myself because it’s where I feel the safest.

I wonder if she’s safer, too.

Town Hall at Wilson - Munson encouraging action
Rep. Cyndi Munson encourages action and connecting with legislators at a town hall in 2018. (BRETT DICKERSON/Okla City Free Press)

I look at the woman I am today – resilient, compassionate, and kind. Have I had to live my life without her to be who I am today? That seems like a painful reason, but maybe it’s true. I’ll never really know, but I am glad I’ve made it here. Almost 37 years old – still learning, growing, embracing my journey of life to become more resilient, more compassionate, and more kind.

I wonder if she looks at the woman she is today, too.

Mother’s Day is when I practice holding my pain while holding my gratitude for all those who filled the gap to understand me, nurture me, and love me. I’ve learned over the years Mother’s Day can also be about celebrating those who mother in our lives, whether they gave birth to us or not. I’ll likely hold my pain all the days of my life on this Earth, but I’ll also be holding tight to my gratitude.

I wonder if she’s found a way to mother and those who fill her gaps, too.

On this Mother’s Day, I am thinking about all of us for whom this day is complicated. It’s rarely ever spoken about, but it’s important to do so. I see you. And I hope you see yourself, too – look at the resilient, compassionate, and kind person you are, despite the pain. I love you.

I hope she takes time today to see herself and love herself, too.


Last Updated May 8, 2022, 9:52 AM by Brett Dickerson – Editor