Warning: this is a bit of a rant!
So I am a single mother. I am not referring to the kind who shares custody with the father and gets every other weekend (or every other week) to herself. I'm also not talking about the kind who has living parents close by who help out a lot. I am not putting down any role of mother here. Each unique situation has its benefits and difficulties. Would I want to be dealing with custody battles? No. Would I want to be working outside the home and missing so many moments with my child? Absolutely not. I am extremely grateful for my current situation and would not change it at this point. All that being said...I need to let off some steam.
This is hard. These have been the most challenging four years of my life. Being a stay at home mom with little to (mostly) no help has been exhausting. I am the only one and have been the only one to care for my son on a day to day basis. For those with an actively engaged partner this has to be unimaginable. I never thought I would be the sole guardian and caretaker of a child.
From birth until now I have done it all. There is no one else to wake up with him (including the 7 months he didn't sleep through the night), no one else to worry and bring him into urgent care when he got sick, no one else to read him a bedtime story or give him a bath. Every boo boo has been kissed by me. Every tear felt by me alone. I am the only one to get him breakfast and have NEVER gotten to sleep in. There is no one else to teach him how to catch a ball or learn his letters and numbers. I am his playmate, disciplinarian, nurturer, nurse, and teacher. Then there are all the household chores to be done daily with no other adult to help. I am solely responsible for cooking dinner each and every night. I have taken on roles that I never expected, putting furniture and toys together, taking out the trash every week, catching spiders and releasing them outside, and teaching him about his penis! I am responsible for all the yard work and all the grocery shopping (and I have to bring him to the store each and every time). Then I am left at the end of the night to watch a show or take a bath...the only time I get to be alone ever.
Why am I writing this? I'm not sure. Maybe because there are so many moments throughout the week where I just want to burst into tears and throw my own tantrum, but I can't. (Actually I haven't cried in over a year at least) I have to keep going day in and day out for the sake of my child. Maybe its because I am sitting here researching pre schools and feeling overwhelmed, wishing his dad were around to help with yet another tough choice. Maybe its because I miss my own mother and wish I could ask for her advice and help. Perhaps it is just to vent and release these feelings pent up inside. I don't know. All I know is I will wake up tomorrow and do it all again because I love my son and I want the best possible life for him. So high five to all the single moms out there for not giving up. You are amazing.