Losing a loved one is at the least, devastating, especially if it's mom.
She's the one who loves you unconditionally, gives advice you may or may not want to hear, uses all her efforts to make you happy and helps you succeed in anything you take on. She takes care of you when you are sick and helps spruce up your college application.
But now that mother dearest has passed away, nothing will ever truly be the same. And when Mother's Day rolls around, you're reminded of it constantly.
For those who lost their mother, being asked, "Ready for Mother's Day?" or "What are you getting mom for Mother's Day?" can become overwhelming and even exhausting. You can't really respond without feeling that small gulp in your throat that just sits there, weighing heavily. You feel like a tub of salt has just been poured into an open wound.
There are ways to handle this grief, especially as Mother's Day approaches. You will always feel helpless and sad. That will never change, but you can still reflect back on all the memories you had with her. You can honor her for all she has done and left behind. Maybe she isn't with you physically, but she's still living on in your heart, mind and soul.
Visit her grave. Sit next to her. Talk to her. Give her an update on your life. Don't leave out any details. She's there, listening from heaven. Lay her favorite flowers at the site before you leave.
Write her a letter or poem. Express your feelings that you miss her. Don't hold back any tears. Wish her a Happy Mother's Day. Talk about some of the best and funniest times you two shared. Tell her why she could pass as the world's greatest mother.
Buy her a gift. Make her something. Whatever you choose, keep it. Cherish it. When you walk by it, you will always look and think, "That's for mom." Get her something you know she'd love and appreciate.
Celebrate Mother's Day. The holiday doesn't have to be grim. Keep it simple. Keep it positive. Shift your mentality. Again, it's okay to cry. But look at Mother's Day as a way to celebrate mom, not mourn her.
Sarah Francis is a half-Palestinian journalism junkie, a proud Charlotte, NC native with an oversized sweet tooth, and an active world traveler. Ask her where she's headed next. (@Sarah_Francis25)