Single Mother = Hot, Principled, Highly Imaginative, Socially and Strategically Important Individual.
Don’t you think?
”No, I’m no one’s wife
But, oh, I love my life
And All That Jazz!”
~Velma from All That Jazz
So you’re a single mother and you say you have no man, no sex, no double income, no respect, no ability to discipline, no energy, no time to exercise, no desire to put on make-up, no cash for clothes, no peace of mind, no freedom to pursue a new career or find a boyfriend, no child support and your ex is dating a baby-faced genius?
(Yes, he seriously is, by the way.)
Well, I’m a single mother and I say you and I can be happy no matter what we think we’re missing now. I say we can have a profound sense of spilling over abundance and prepare ourselves for even more in this very moment without the occurrence of a single external event, and that when we do this, external events will begin to mirror our internal wealth. I also say forty is way better than baby-faced geniusness.
(But that may just be me!)
I know what it’s like to feel everything in paragraph one, but I’ve decided to serve myself more lavishly ά la paragraph two.
Once I was blind but now I see.
The mere decision to switch from defining myself by lack to understanding myself as already in abundance raised a powerful transformational energy that completely and authentically changed my life from the inside out.
Wait a second! If you want to keep focusing on the sorrow, the scars, the struggle, the fatigue, the loneliness, the poverty, the revenge and the weight then you should go read something else right now because you won’t get any fodder for that scary story here.
If, however, you want more-better-sweeter and you are willing to let go of being a victim in order to stand up and embody the power, joy and fabulousness that you already possess, then welcome here, welcome home, and stick close, Bloodsister, because we’re making the whole world new!
Compost the Stereotype, Please
Single is a word with mixed connotations: unmarried for sure, available possibly, free and capable of pursuing one’s career perhaps, or on the down side, unable to catch a mate.
Add mother to single and the odds are all the potentially positive meanings of single snap like an overworked, underpaid, burned-out, potentially std-ed chick feeding her toddler mickey d’s fries on a greyhound bus to nowhere.
Listen: Whatever your stereotype of “the single mom” is, I know my truth is that I am a hot, principled, highly imaginative, and socially and strategically important individual, and so are you.
New Power Play-ahs
Single mothers are the New Power Play-ahs. (Say it hip-hop-ish to get the full feeling in your mouth of just how smokin’ hot we are.)
Not only do 50 percent of marriages end in divorce, but a rising majority of children are raised in single parent households, with most being headed by women. While the martyrdom image of the dumped housewife—or the hardworking CEO with a belligerent cheater for an ex husband who now must do it all, or the lonely, unkempt mom on match.com—may have worked for a while, it’s so last season.
It’s time we step up to take off the cigarette-singed bathrobe of discontent and reveal the true hotties we are, embrace the power we have, and fulfill ourselves while we manifest the beautiful future.
We have the children, we don’t have to compromise, we get the extra support income, we get the house, we get the freedom from unfaithful and/or abusive ongoing marriages, we can express ourselves without answering to a jealous spouse, we build the loyalty—with hard work and day-by-day accountability—with the children that will last through the lifetime so that we will not be left all alone in old age.
We have work-life play! We have the freedom to live without the compromise that a marriage requires. We often have exciting sex lives completely separate from our responsibilities to our children while simultaneously we experience the arc of life by truly participating in the lives of our children every single day. The list goes on and on and it’s all good! So those are some of the legitimate, objective reasons we have to be proud of ourselves as single mothers.
But for sure some single mothers don’t yet think of themselves as so lucky and certainly the media’s darling welfare mom doesn’t help our self image. In fact, did you know that, according to the U.S. Census Bureau as of 2009, approximately 84 percent of custodial parents are mothers, and 79.5 percent of those are gainfully employed.
Silly little welfare mom stereotype.
Clearly when one is going through a break up, divorce, custody, and/or support battle, life is not all rosy, and nothing I say here is meant to belittle that intense experience. What I do mean to do is to encourage you to dance around in the territory far beyond the common place public image of a struggling, slappin’ it together with tape and gum single mom desperate to bag a new daddy for her kids. Puhleeeaaase!
You have the power and ability to reconnect your true passion for parenting to your everyday circumstances, fulfill yourself while also giving your children your best, and start feeling dazzled again on a moment by moment basis.
Frequently when a woman goes through a divorce or break up involving children she absorbs an enormous amount of stress. Top of the list is her concern for her children, seconded only by her concerns for financial security, physical safety, and shelter. Guess what effect this stress has on us? It makes us tight, brittle, high-strung, defended, dry-as-wasps women who look old before our time. Alternatively, we eat ourselves into hiding to numb out the pain and swallow any small feeling of selfish need that may arise. Then there’s the segment of us who run straight into another relationship to avoid being alone.
Who do you think we serve by sacrificing our beauty, self esteem, intelligence and unique opportunity for independence in these ways?
I’ll give you a hint. It starts with your ex and ends with nobody. Because once he’s done reveling in his newfound freedom, he’s going to move on with whatever cute twenty-five year old comes along next, and you’re still going to be stuck home most nights wrestling with the godforsaken recycling and squeezing pink frosting hearts on cupcakes for tomorrow’s birthday party.
But I know who you really are because I am you.
I’ve been there on the floor crying all over myself while a guy I used to love towered over me yelling viciously while I tried in vain to cover my baby’s ears. I’ve had my job search sabotaged, been verbally threatened, called more ugly names than you can count in my own home, received hundreds of derogatory emails, voicemails and text messages, and been dragged through an expensive and stressful court case. Even in the smallest, most hurtful moments, I was bewildered because my reality did not match my truth.
What I’m living today is my truth one hundred percent. And I know you can live yours as well. Not just a little bit, not just sometimes, but all of it all the time. You don’t have to wait until you wean your baby, or until she goes to pre-school, or until you save money, or get a promotion or lose 20 pounds. Start right now.
I know you are stereotypically vulnerable to thinking of yourself as disadvantaged, weak, disempowered, dumped, and dependent on that support check. But I am challenging you in this instant to drop that story. Wherever it comes from, what does this label do for you? Who does it serve for you to think so poorly of yourself?
Whatever your present circumstances, they are the dream card dealt to you within which you will find yourself and fulfill your destiny on this planet.
There is no imperfection but that which you are choosing to experience right now.
If you are experiencing your life as flawed then likely it will be. If you experience single motherhood as a lonely, no-win struggle, likely it will be. I am experiencing myself as beautiful and turned on by life right now and I wish you would join me!
Change your experience and the quality of your condition will change to reflect your new preference.
This is not thought control, visualization, or denial of reality. This is full body-heart-mind-spirit shape shifting. This is a gut level meta-insistence on having a wonderful life no matter what prince charming broke your heart and backed his sports car over the white picket fence while you were trying get the car seat latched in between the stickiness and the sour smell. This is your life to reclaim and you are so worthy—as worthy as every other being on this planet is worthy—to be in love, in joy, and in life.
Anna E. Pollock is an Ivy-league educated chick single-parenting a girl wonder. She is the founder of Angel Animal Eye~Candy Mommy, a small business with the big intention to revolutionize how single mothers think about themselves and how the world thinks about us. Anna blogs at here and connects on the Angel
Animal Eye~Candy Mommy facebook page. Come join the fun!