I would have never predicted that I’d be raising two kids — let alone babies — as a single mama.
(But let’s be fair…who could predict such a thing?)
Growing up, I had plenty of exposure to single mothers and their children. The fathers weren’t in the picture for one reason or another, but I never thought much about it. My parents were together — and have been for over 30 years now — so I expected a similar outcome for myself when the time came. If you told me that I’d be separated before 30 with two kids under the age of 3, I’d probably laugh in your face.
But this is my reality now.
Even prior to “officially” letting go of what was, I was doing a lot of the child rearing alone. My ex traveled 2+ weeks out of every month for work, and even while pregnant with my second, he was rarely present. A stay-at-home mom of an already 1-year old, I had to adjust to two kids without the help rather quickly. The benefit of having my family nearby made the transition all the more bearable.
I look at those single parents I knew with a new set of eyes, as I now know it is no easy feat. Some days, I wonder how I’ll get anything done. And others, I feel right on top of the world. I grieve for the dream that I tried so hard to hold onto, and I’m hopeful for the good that is to come. The transition from being at home with my kids 24/7 and being in complete charge of how they are raised to leaving them in the care of someone I hardly know will be a difficult one, as will reentering the workforce after 3 years. My mind drifts into the realm of dating with kids and how *when I’m ready* it’ll be a whole new ballgame.
But what I think about most is my little ones, not yet fully speaking, and how everything will affect them. Their behaviors, future relationships, the way they view mom and dad. I’ll continue to do everything I can to make this shift as smooth as possible for them, though it’s hard to mask the hurt I feel some days.
In order to be the best mama, the one they so deserve, I cannot continue to neglect my happiness. I’ve started back with meditation and my yoga practice, and I’ve put myself out there to meet new people. It’ll be a tough road ahead, but I know that together “we’ll move mountains” (I know, SO cliche) and trudge brazenly through this uncharted territory.
2 thoughts on “Single Mama of Two: New Territory”
Beautifully written. Thank you for your brutal honesty and sharing your journey. I am in awe of your power.
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Thanks so much, Sheila! Things have been tough, but I power on. ✧✦✧