How to celebrate Mother’s Day when your mom is deceased

How to celebrate Mother's Day when your mom is deceased

Before I share my thoughts on how to celebrate Mother’s Day when your mom is deceased, let me share what I learned about how the whole thing started. Okay, so Mother’s Day in the United States started because of a woman named Anna Jarvis. She was inspired by her mother, Ann Reeves Jarvis, who helped her community and promoted health during the Civil War.

Anna wanted a special day to appreciate the hard work and love of all mothers.

Check this out: in 1908, the first official Mother’s Day was celebrated at a church in West Virginia where Ann Reeves Jarvis used to teach.

The idea grew more popular, including a big event in Philadelphia, and eventually caught the attention of President Woodrow Wilson.

In 1914, President Wilson made Mother’s Day an official holiday to be celebrated every second Sunday of May, honoring mothers.

That’s a pretty cool story, right?

Well, for many of us, the story stops being cool there.


Because Mother’s Day can be an intently painful day for those whose mothers are no longer with on this earth.

I want to talk about the title: How to celebrate Mother’s Day when your mom is deceased.

Losing a mother is INTENSE!

I’ll be honest: I had no clue how painful this day was for people whose mothers had passed away.

Now, I know fully.

It is incredibly heartbreaking.

It feels like a deep hole in your heart that can’t be filled.

As you know, the connection between a good mother and her child is one-of-a-kind. It’s grounded on her love, support, and guidance.

How to celebrate Mother's Day when your mom is deceased

There is nothing like an amazing mom.

By “amazing,” I don’t mean perfect. All moms are human and can never be perfect, right!

You become close.

You become interconnected.

Without her, everything seems less bright, and grief becomes a regular feeling.

Regardless of your age, the grief shows in moments of deep sadness, wanting her back and not being able to believe she’s gone.

The memories of times together bring comfort and hurt as you wish for just one more hug, one more talk, and the chance to say “I love you” to the one who loved you most.

With all this inside me, I still manage to smile because I know things will get a bit easier as God heals my broken heart.

He is good at that.

He comforts and reminds us of His presence in a whisper of peace and moments of happiness.

If you really want to know how to celebrate Mother’s Day when your mom is deceased, lean into His comfort.

Also, if you can relate to what I’m talking about, I want you to know you will be ok. Every single one of those comfort scriptures you’ve read or heard about will come to life in your season like flesh appearing on a skeleton.

But how about the elephant in the room?

What is it? It is Mother’s Day. Let’s talk about that.

How to celebrate Mother’s Day when your mom is deceased.

Clearly, this day can bring a mix of emotions, from sadness and grief to longing and nostalgia.

If you’re facing Mother’s Day without your mom due to her passing, know that you’re not alone.

I found an article that says grief can make us feel so alone, but we are not.

“All of this is happening every day in every city, in every state, every country and yet grief is so isolating, it’s impossible to imagine the multitudes mirroring our experience.”


Ascher is the author of Ghosting: A Widow’s Voyage Out.
“Grief Is Universal. That Doesn’t Make It Less Isolating”,

The article is here if you’d like to read it. It’s pretty good. I related to so much of it.

Christian Woman, there are thousands, if not millions, of people who know exactly how you’re feeling. I’m definitely one of them.

But there are healthy ways to navigate this day from a Christian perspective.

I have an amazing counselor. I mentioned him in a previous post about my grief journey. His name is Tim Matthia, and he helped me re-frame Mother’s Day.

Frankly, I hadn’t really considered how I’d approach it. But, like any good counselor, he didn’t let me hide my hand in the sand.

“How do you think you can use this day to honor your mother?” he asked in his normal, calming voice.

In my mind, I thought I’d just lay in bed eating an endless supply of Snickers and watching Turner Movie Classic. But, I dared not say it because that sounded just…well…dumb.

After some talking through it with Time, he coached me to come up with this.

How to celebrate Mother's Day when your mom is deceased

So, here is what I’ll do…

That morning, we’ll share our beautiful memories of my mom.

Yes, there will be tears; yes, it will be a time of sorrow. But isn’t that alright?

Emotions shouldn’t be concealed. Tim taught me this important lesson. It’s essential to acknowledge and embrace our sadness just as freely as we celebrate our joy.

The important thing is not to dwell too deeply in those sad moments.

So, I plan to share, cry, and go about my day with some level of relief.

Think about how you can celebrate your mother’s legacy, too.

Instead of focusing solely on the loss, celebrate the life and legacy of this wonderful woman.

Take time to remember her love, kindness, and wisdom. Again, it’s ok to cry. Tears are healthy.

Go ahead and share stories and memories with family and friends, honoring the impact she had on your life and the lives of others.

Here is my Instagram post. Click to view it and follow me as well.

Some other things I plan to do to get through that day.

I know this is hard for you. I feel it, too. But as you consider how to celebrate Mother’s Day when your mom is deceased, you have to have a plan.

Let me share my other plans that may help you as you consider how to celebrate Mother’s Day when your mom is deceased.

Here is what we can do and how to celebrate Mother’s Day when your mom is deceased (at least in my mind):

  1. Let’s Reflect on God’s Promises:

    Turn to scripture for comfort and reassurance.

    The Bible is filled with verses that speak to God’s love, care, and compassion.

    Psalm 34:18 is a great one that reminds us: “The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.”

    Try meditating on these promises, allowing them to bring you peace in the midst of your sorrow.

    I think I’ll reflect in silence on my deck – should the weather permit. 🙂

    I’ll listen to the birds sing as I sip coffee and feel a gentle breeze on my face. My deck is screened in. I just hope a lizard doesn’t come through the floor or the weather is too cold. 😀
  2. We Can Pray for Strength and Healing:

    As you well know, prayer is a powerful tool for finding comfort and healing. You cannot ponder how to celebrate Mother’s Day when your mom is deceased without factoring in prayer, Girl!

    The day is going to be hard – plain and simple. No way around it.

    So, on Mother’s Day, pray for God’s strength to carry you through the day and for healing from the pain of loss.

    I don’t think it will ever completely go away on this side of heaven, but the Holy Spirit can help us manage it and can sew up some of the holes in our hearts.

    Share your thoughts, feelings, and memories with God, knowing He hears and cares for you deeply.

    Perhaps before I pray, I’ll discover a truly heartwarming song that reminds me of God’s incredible love for us.

  3. Engage in Acts of Service:

    My grief, as I write this, is still very fresh. My heartbreak is raw. So this suggestion is not an option for me now.

    In the future, one way to honor my mother’s memory is by engaging in acts of service.

    You can consider volunteering your time or resources to help those in need, whether serving at a local shelter, visiting the elderly, or participating in a community service project. In doing so, you’ll honor your mother’s legacy of compassion and spread God’s love to others.

    This blog post is my act of service in a way of helping you answer the question of how to celebrate Mother’s Day when your mom is deceased. I hope and pray it encourages someone. Let me know in the comments if it does.

  4. Connect with Your Church Family:

    Surrounding yourself with supportive friends, family, and faith community members always helps.

    If you can, attend church services or participate in a special Mother’s Day remembrance event. If you cannot, it’s okay. There is no handbook for this. No rules beyond not letting the grief consume you. Amen?

    For some, being in the company of others who share your Christian faith can provide comfort, encouragement, and a sense of belonging. For others, time alone accomplishes the same. You do what is most healthy for you.

  5. Want to know how to celebrate Mother’s Day when your mom is deceased? Here is how: Take Care of Yourself:

    Remember to prioritize self-care on Mother’s Day and the days leading up to it.

    Engage in activities that bring you joy and peace, whether in nature, practicing mindfulness and prayer, or engaging in creative expression.

    Take care of your physical, emotional, and spiritual well-being, knowing you are precious in God’s sight. You matter.

  6. Find Hope in the Resurrection:

    As Christians, we have the hope of the resurrection, knowing that death is NOT the end but a transition to eternal life with God.

    Take comfort in the promise of reunion with your mother in heaven, where there will be no more sorrow or tears. Let this hope sustain you as you navigate the journey of grief and healing. It really helps me to know she’s in His presence, and one day I will be, too.

I cannot share a recent pic of my mom because the pain is too fresh.

But here is my “mommy” and my grandma pregnant with me. My cousin is in the pic behind them. I thank God I still have her to guide and support me.

How to celebrate Mother's Day when your mom is deceased - this is my mom

Finally, on this Mother’s Day, may you find comfort, healing, and strength in the loving arms of our Heavenly Father.

Remember that you are cherished and held in His tender care. There is no death in Christ. My mom and yours live on in heaven and in the memories and legacy she left behind.

On Mother’s Day, as you face the deep sadness from missing your dear mom, you’re going to be ok.

Just as I will.

Though our moms are no longer physically present, their investment in us influences and continues to shape every part of our lives.

Think of it this way. Her affection goes beyond the confines of our world. Why? Because you have memories, Girl!

They are surrounding you with warmth even though she’s not physically there.

Give yourself permission to fully experience your feelings as acknowledging and respecting your grief is the pathway to healing.

As I always say, grief takes as long as it takes. You may have lost her years ago, but it can still feel fresh on some days.

Remember, you’re not alone in this pain. Jesus is with you – whether you “feel” Him or not. He’s carrying you through. That’s why your faith is faith. It’s trusting behind what you see.

As I wrote this post, I wrote this poem at the same time. It really helped ease my grief a bit.

Here are a few videoes I’ll play as I sip my coffee on the deck on Mother’s Day:

I’ve got more! Let me know if the comments if you want me to post my YouTube playlist. 🙂

Source for Mother’s Day History:

Our American Holidays: Mother’s Day by Susan Tracy Rice. Click here to view it.

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