“You’ve walked away from every relationship you’ve been in! Don’t you want a stable life for your daughter?”
It wasn’t the first time I’d heard this.
It’s hard enough trying to date as a single mom in a broken world, but, like a heavy blow to the gut, these words pierced their way into my core. I felt my heart begin to beat out of my chest as every possible intense emotion was triggered within me.
My ego wanted to scream, “Who the f*ck do you think you are?!” But, instead, my eyes welled up and I thoughtlessly chuckled, “I know. I’m an idiot!” Shortly after, I repeated my own words over and over again in my head until it became my truth, and I began to step into another downward spiral of questioning my validity as a mother.
Was I an idiot?
Was I ruining my child’s life for walking away from relationships that no longer served me?
What was wrong with me?
I spent some time in solitude and longing for clarity in this mental tornado I was in. Within minutes, I envisioned my daughter and could hear her laughter like she was laying right next to me.
I felt this sense of calmness come over me, and I knew the answer was no.
No, I’m not an idiot.
No, there’s nothing wrong with me.
No, I’m not ruining her life.
And neither are you.
Because stability should be rooted in a life of honesty and unconditional love.
Because waking up each day and making a life for our children models strength and perseverance.
Because, even though we may struggle, we are striving to live with purpose and trying to get by on our own.
Because no child should grow up thinking that alcoholism and infidelity are normal.
Because it’s okay to walk away from being someone’s emotional stomping ground.
Because our children deserve a role model in their lives, someone who is self-aware and striving for growth.
Because we were not put on this earth to become someone’s physical property.
Because I want my child, your child, her child, to believe that mommy is worth more than someone’s “maybe.”
Because mommy should be able to express herself openly and freely, without an attachment to a man.
Because mommy is fearless by not settling for any less than she’s worth.
Because being with someone who isn’t willing to fight for a healthy relationship is a lost cause.
Because they are watching to see how we love ourselves and live life with integrity.
Because, sometimes, walking away from someone you love is the only way to honor yourself.
So, yes, I’ve walked away a few times in my life. Maybe you have too. Not out of fear. Not out of pride. But out of sheer self-love and self-respect, and that is the greatest stability we can gift to our children.
Author: Yeggi Watts
Image: Author’s Own
Editor: Khara-Jade Warren
Copy Editor: Sara Kärpänen