I’m writing this article with the theme song of the movie Rocky playing in my mind. For at this very moment, I don’t just feel like Delaine The Divorced Mother who raises her three kids 95% of the time on her own with no help. No no - I am a champion; my feet are dancing and my arms are raised in victory. For it took strength I didn’t know I had, sweat, blood, and yes, even tears - but in the end, I won: I defeated the insidious Chicken Pox virus that descended upon my children last week and remain standing!
Perhaps you find it silly that I’m making this into a big deal. But if you’re a single parent – (not a part-time parent who only has the kids every second weekend but a SINGLE parent) - I know you ’get’ what I’m feeling. Maybe it wasn’t because of a disease or sickness - maybe it came in the wake of an unusually insane schedule you miraculously pulled off, a smile you kept on your face for the kids despite the brutal argument you’d had with the ex, giving the kids the best Christmas they’ve ever had despite the odds against you, or maybe even just making it through those final hours before the kids went to bed when you felt like the walking dead.
THESE are the moments, the victories, that go unnoticed and unrewarded by the outside world. THESE are the moments that we KNOW would have other people (maybe the ex?) pulling out their hair, unable to cope. Yet in truth, we have proven - if not only to ourselves – that we, the single parent species, are INCREDIBLE.
Oh, we may not be humming this jubilant tune when we’re eyeball in it – and I confess there were numerous times this past week when I felt sorry for myself, pleaded with the Universe to chuck me a bone, and even felt angry and resentful that I was doing it on my own…
But the Heroine in me, someone I’ve become well-acquainted with these past years since divorcing, reminded me, “This too shall pass”, “You’re only given what you can handle”, and “It’s OK to ask for help!” So I brushed off my martyr-like state of mind and phoned a couple of girlfriends to cover me for an hour or two so I could recharge. And they weren’t all ‘busy’ like that gloomy voice in my head had told me – they were more than willing to provide me with a brief reprieve.
So if this article serves but to make one other single parent knowingly smile and stand a little taller, then my job today is gone. And I shall trumpet it out for all to hear, I really don’t care who has to cover their ears: us single parents are AMAZING! (And man, someone should do a Rocky remake on YouTube dedicated to us!)