As a veteran single mother I find strength in looking back at my own journey. Here are a few of my secrets of survival as a single mother.
I first saw single motherhood through the glasses of poverty. That thought kept me frozen and frightened. The only way out of that freeze was to eradicate all of my negative thoughts about being a single mom.
We weren't broken. We were building something new and stronger. We weren't poor We were creatively handling finances. In my thoughts I became a pioneer woman taking my family across uncharted terrain. However you need to do it, make your thoughts about being a single mom positive. In the words of Wayne Dyer, "Change your thoughts Change your life."
Blaze your own course as a single mother. Let go of any preconceived notion of what you think you need to do and dream big. Write down your new dream life in vivid detail. Picture it in your head. Feel the joy in your being. Every time you get discouraged or scared reread your dream. Then expect it to happen. The Law of Attraction states that you get what you think about. Think it Believe it Receive it.
Eight years ago my children were 2, 5 & 7. The lawyer's and judge were certain that since I had a master's degree and my children were so old (yes, old!? ) I could easily re enter the workforce full time. My crazy wild dream was to stay at home with my children and move to Maine. Much to everyone' s amazement I am in Maine. I am here to get my children on and off the bus. I'm here to drive them to their activities. I am a very present force in their life. What ever your dream, know you can achieve it.
Regardless of your marital status you deserve to be treated like the gem you are. With that thought in mind a good way to cope is to do something outlandishly extravagant just for you.
During my separation, my oldest sister was deployed in Kuwait. Although she was in a war zone running a hospital for injured soldiers and missing her husband and four grown children she emailed me daily. In one of her emails she told me to spend $100 at Victoria Secret. My underwear drawer at the time consisted of leftover nursing bras and ratty Hanes. I did as I was told and something shifted. Those gorgeous undies hollered, "I matter. I am beautiful." the sting of betrayal started to lift.
IT IS THE WAY IT IS
Author Virginia Satir said, "Life is not the way it was supposed to be. Life is the way it is. The way you cope is what makes the difference."
There will be days when the sadness threatens to drown you and nights when the sobs are uncontrollable. Stuff is going to break, pipes sometimes burst and you rre left to figure it out for yourself or ask for help. Your kids will get sick and the three a.m. worry will make you wish you had someone there to help carry the worry. Flying solo is hard.
But there are ways to deal with it.
Consider single motherhood a cleansing experience. The best way to do this is to get cleaning. Don't just clean. Clean out! Put everything you don't absolutely love and everything you don't absolutely need in a box and donate it. Every time you clean a drawer, a closet, or a counter your spirits will soar. Clearing out is the main premise of Feng Shui which accordingly states that by clearing clutter you can receive more.
Whether you believe in God or not, expect something greater than yourself to kick in when you need it the most. Know you will receive help when you need it. Believe in miracles.
Once in mid December after dropping off my children for a visit with their dad, I found a note on my door that read, "Yes Virginia there is a Santa Claus. Look in your barn."
In the barn were piles of presents for my children, wrapping paper, and bows and even a tool kit and bubble bath set for me. To this day I have no idea who provided that Christmas for us. However I do believe in miracles.
The time will come--probably after the kids are asleep and you are doing the mundane chores of laundry, lunches and daily debris pick up--when it hits you. Life feels absolutely normal. You've blazed your own course and surprised even yourself. You have great underwear. All of those wedding presents and stuff you never loved have been passed on. You are receiving miracles. You are happy.
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