Strategic Plan for Mother’s Day

by Davina Fankhauser
President - Fertility Within Reach

When someone says, “Happy Mother’s Day” I say thank you.  On the inside, I feel a twinge of pain.  Why should I feel pain, when I finally have my family?  Because I, and millions of other women, know….

We know the pain associated with Mother’s Day.  Some of us know the pain of experiencing Mother’s Day after suffering a pregnancy loss.  We know the pain, grief and sense of isolation while others are joyful.   We know the pain of showering other mothers with love and support when you are aching inside for what they have.  We know the pain and frustration of not having control over our bodies and feeling helpless.

While I, and many Parents After Infertility, know we are blessed to have our families, we also recognize the heartache associated with Mother’s Day.  Our organization has crafted a plan we hope will help ease your suffering on Mother’s Day.

Strategic Plan to Survive the Holidays

  1. Find a buddy.  Support one another as you make plans to survive the tough holidays.
  2. Figure out what you need to survive the holidays; not participate, get additional support, hear specific words of support, etc.
  3. Find a key person, the Alpha Dog, in your immediate circle(s) and let them know what you need (family, friend, clergy, etc.).  This may require 20 seconds of insane courage.  Just do it.  You’ll be surprised what doors may open up.
    1. People who care about us need to be educated how to be sensitive.  They need your help.
  4. Commit to put a purpose to your pain. 
    1. Send a letter (via post, email or fax) to your legislator, employer, and/or insurance company and request insurance coverage for Infertility.  Send it on the holiday.
    2. Send an email to an online health website and ask them to use the updated, current definition of Infertility when educating patients about health conditions (, World Health Organization,, EmpowHer,, etc.).  Send it on the holiday
    3. Share your story.  Write a blog about advocating for yourself related to your Infertility.  (We would be happy to share your story if you don’t want to create your own website.)
    4. Volunteer.  Sometimes stepping outside of our circumstances and helping others in pain is the best medicine.
    5. Do something exceptionally kind for yourself.

How do I personally spend Mother’s Day?  Quietly.  I practice what I preach and send out letters to help those still trying to build their family.  In addition, I nurture myself.  I do some gardening and plant a Lilac bush and some Forget Me Nots (because they are my favorite).   It’s healing.

No matter how you choose to spend the holidays, it’s important to remember to be kind to yourself.  We hope you give this plan a try and see if the holiday is more bearable.

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Davina Fankhauser

President - Fertility Within Reach