Single Mom, You are Enough.

Tonight I watched the Oprah show on children of divorce and it ripped my heart out.

The first time I saw these little kids I must of still been married and I know I cried then too. But as I listened to this little boy, pour his heart out about what it was like to have his mom walk out of his life, my heart broke for him and my own children. The little boy then 4 years old saying “I wish my mom never had a boyfriend, your not supposed to be with another person when your married”. I know that no matter what I do for my children there must be part of them that will always feel that way about their dad. Watching that little boy, you think how could a parent EVER have an affair? How could they EVER choose the love of a lover over the love of their own child?

It blows my mind. Like can’t wrap my brain around it at all.

From where that child sits it is the most selfish thing on earth. I wonder if my children’s dad has ever thought of that? Knowing the hole they will always have in their heart because the cold hard truth is their dad, then and now chose another women over them.

I want so badly to fill that hole for them. I wish I could. I wish I knew how, or was capable of it. But the fact is I can’t. I can’t control their dad, I can’t force him to make them a priority or put them first or spend time with them. I can’t ask him to play ball with his son the way he used to, or even spend 5 minutes a visit of alone time with him where she is not present. I can’t. I hate that I can’t make him do that. Cant make him see the damage it causes. Cant make him care.

Single parents..You are enough.

But what I can do, is play ball one on one with my son. Yeah I’m a mom and not his dad, but if that’s what matters to him then I can learn to throw a spiral. I can practice my passing game and defensive blocks, I can pitch the ball. I can put the mitt on and play catch. And I do. I can learn about Poky Mon, or listen to him read Diary of a Wimpy Kid. I can talk to him at bed time when I tuck him in and we lay side by side for a little while, talking about his day. I can tell him everyday of his life that he is an amazing human and that there’s not a prouder mother to be found on the planet.

I’m not his dad.  I can’t be. He will always want and miss and need his dad. I can’t fix that.

But tonight I heard the Dr. tell that dad on Oprah “your ENOUGH. All you single parents out there doing the best job you can YOU ARE ENOUGH”. There are no words to express how deeply I needed someone to tell me that. You’d think it’s common sense, that of course I’d know that I’m doing the best I can so that’s good enough. But as a single parent you are isolated from the world, you don’t have people tell you that on a regular basis. You don’t have people around you who see you BE a mother all the time.

You don’t get validation.

So you beat yourself up day and night and question everything. You have mental wars with yourself, if you were too harsh that time, if you weren’t the next. All of that stuff, you just don’t know if your doing it right, so hearing that tonight shook me.

If our kids learn their worth from us, then I want my kids to grow up:

Slightly defiant.
And fabulous!single mom struggles

I want them to ALL (son and my daughters) to be able to cook a great meal, know the kind of manners that they can socialize with the best of ’em and no one will ever know they were educated in public schools!
I want them to know how to defend themselves and each other.
I want them to know the meaning of family, love and loyalty.
I want them to LOVE themselves, and accept themselves.
I want them to be self-sufficient at a young age, able to survive and take care of themselves in a crisis if god-forbid something happened to me.
I want them to be bold and fearless.
I want them to be coach-able and wise.
I want them to know that ANYTHING is possible, want them to believe in magic.
If any of this is who they grow up to be then I will be so happy.
And at the end of the day when my little brood leaves my nest and they ARE these people, because these are the people I have raised them to be, then I will know….I was enough.

Sarah Centrella is the author of the book Hustle Believe Receive which teaches you how to apply the #HBRMethod to change your life and live your dream.

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  • May 20, 2011 - 5:08 pm | Permalink

    I read a research study once that examined a bunch of variables (poverty, divorce, etc) regarding children’s outcomes…mother’s education level had one of the most significant effects. Trust me, it’s heartbreaking to see our kids go through turmoil and disappointment, but they’ll be just fine with a rock-star mama like you! 🙂

  • May 21, 2011 - 3:01 am | Permalink

    wow thats interesting… I never thought of that. Your an amazing single mama too!! love your strength 🙂

  • May 23, 2011 - 10:02 pm | Permalink

    Love your post! Especially the part about putting on a glove to teach your son to play catch. I’m having a boy (still single) and I thought of the same thing. I’d like to recommend a book “Statistics to Success” Four Priorities single mothers can champion to raise successful sons! In interviewed the author Mr. Zachary Hawkins as he was raised by a single mother when his dad went to prison. His insight is a fresh perspective from a son’s point of view.

    Thanks for the tweet!

  • May 25, 2011 - 8:19 am | Permalink

    Thanks Dallas Single Mom, I will check it out for sure…yeah it’s hard raising a boy who so desperately needs his dad around, but it just meant that I had to step it up and be interested in what he’s interested so that he didnt miss those experiences…

  • Anonymous
    May 27, 2011 - 6:38 am | Permalink

    It comes down to being the best parent you can! You can’t fill in for, or fix the mistakes the other parent has made and I’ve been witness to one trying and it just makes it a more discombobulated mess. Be the best YOU can be for your kids, show interest, true love to them, spend time with them, and allow them to connect with you. Those are the things they’re going to remember, those are the things they are going to cherish. You can’t necessarily “fix” what was, or what has happened, but you can build from it to make a stronger relationship with your kids where they go to bed everyday (wherever they are, and with whichever parent they’re with), that you love them to the ends of earth and back again.

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