This post is for fellow single mothers like myself who place their children first place in their lives and neglect a lot of their own needs and desires. I think I should have entitled this post, “Single, NOT DEAD!” LOL (Just kidding)
For those of you reading this and can’t relate, she’s the one holding two jobs, despite being racked by the pain of abuse or ongoing health issues. Or the one overcome with shame from having a child(ren) out of wedlock. Or the one who came to the U.S. for a better life, though she still lives in poverty. The one widowed with two children (like my own mother). The one who was raped or trafficked, and kept the child. The one who NEVER dreamed she’d be divorced.
Women like the ones I’ve describe above are all around us, as we know from the statistics and news headlines, but sometimes, it feels like we are
invisible. Our kids remain well-dressed and well-fed. We attend and serve in the church. We work just as hard as the boss at the job.
It’s easy to start feeling overloaded, overtired, and resentful. As mothers we have a natural instinct to put everyone first. But what about you? Who’s taking care of you? We have physical, emotional and spiritual needs just like everyone else.
Single moms need support for the feelings of abandonment, anger, and fear that can come from our often-unexpected family situations. Even for the happiest, well-adjusted single moms, running a household on your own can get lonely.
As single moms we are often seen as superheros (rescuing everyone) to the ones we love, but that can lead to us feeling unappreciated, taken advantage of, or overburdened. When these feelings arise we need to take some things off the incomplete to do list, get support or assistance (it’s okay to ask for help), renegotiate agreements that are causing to much stress, end unhealthy relationships that add no value, and know that it is okay to say NO to some things. Don’t feel guilty for buying that date night dress you saw in the window at the mall, even though you have no date. Make the kids go to bed and eat that late night ice cream without feeling guilty. Have lunch with your girlfriends. Go on dates (yes dates, plural, lol). Book a day at the spa to get rubbed on and drink some pina coladas. Set goals for yourself (your kids will one day be grown and gone). Take vacations without the kids annually. Whatever you decide to do, as long as it’s healthy and it puts a smile on your face, just do it (LIFE IS TOO SHORT NOT TO ENJOY IT)!