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A Cup for Mom

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As I reflect on Mother’s Day over the year that I personally have experienced both through the lens of a mom,  daughter, and a therapist. I’ve seen many changes over the years; for example,  I remember a time when children fervently desired to take their coins, or the generous giftings of others to purchase items or to make items for mom.

Mom was held in such high regard, she’s the person who would never leave us or hurt us no matter what. Over the years I have seen our view of mothers change. Although as a whole we still love mom. Many of us have exemplary moms who always do the right things, who support us, even through the occasional chastisements or checking us on our behavior, responses to a situation or perhaps even lack of insight on our part.

I also want to honor the mother’s who left us due to circumstances beyond their control, their love for their children knows no bounds and will remain forever in hearts and minds.

Unfortunately,  many people are experiencing moms that for a variety of reasons are emotionally unavailable, consumed by substances, challenged by untreated mental health issues, struggling with abusive or neglectful relationships, or just broken in spirit.

Speaking from a woman’s perspective, the news of learning of a pregnancy can either be ”Thank God”  and joyous or filled with dread and feelings of fright and confusion. There are so many factors at play.  A young woman or adolescent female looking to be accepted is seeking validation for her feelings . Looking to be loved finds herself pregnant and alone.  From the beginning she willingly gives 100 percent to a relationship that gives her unfulfilled promises. This baby is now required to fill a space that is impossible for a baby to fill.

Mom continues to seek promises of fulfillment though a broken spirit, similar to one pouring liquid into a cracked cup. The more one pours or attempts to contain the precious liquid it continues to leak.

I don’t want to give the impression that only young moms have leaky cups many moms have leaky cups.  The majority of us wake up each day with a goal of getting through our day and pouring, pouring and pouring more into the lives of those we touch. We as women don’t think about the care of the cup or the maintenance of our cup. Most of the time we can describe the condition of the cups of those around us. But have no idea how cracked, leaky or empty our own cups may be.

As an adoption and family therapist I work with women to first identify the condition of their cups and then to find healing to restore, strengthen and maintain their cups. This is not always an easy task because as women we are masterfulat hiding, denying and minimizing the condition of our cups. This is survival, this is strength, this is coping at least how we have been taught to believe or had modeled for us by the women in our lives.

We want to make other things a priority, we perfect the outer image, we try to create the best representation of ourselves, keeping our truth and authenticity deep inside. How can one live in truth and authenticity while maintaining their cup?

I invite you on a visual journey with me to explore our cups.Take this moment for you. Find a comfortable, quiet area to sit and reflect. Close your eyes and slowly inhale, hold the breath for 6 seconds, release slowly for 4 seconds and repeat. Release any tension or discomfort you feel in your body while doing this breathwork?

Where is your cup?

What color is your cup?

Using your internal eye closely look and notice designs or words on your cup.

Are their tiny cracks or lines or discoloration on your cup?

Is your current cup broken or damaged beyond repair?

If so, with your eyes closed gently look to your left. Image a beautiful gift bag. As you see the gift bag, you’ll notice the tag has “Mom” written on it. Ooen the bag and remove your new cup

Notice what makes your cup unique and validate the color, design and feel of your cup.

Think about what you’d like to put into your cup.

Ask yourself what you need in your cup today.

Write down what comes to you to fill your cup.

Today give yourself permission to do something that fills your cup.

Happy Mother’s Day!


Tammy Austin


Email for addiltional activities to aid with your journey.

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