Once upon a time, there was a little girl who dreamed of finding Prince Charming, having a couple of kids, a house with a white picket fence, a huge tree with a tire swing on it, and a few pets.
Then that girl grew up and found herself being a single mom.
It has taken me years to embrace my single mommy hood. Let me be honest with you: at first, I didn’t like it.
I felt ashamed, especially when going to family events. I felt like everyone looked at me as a failure, like, “Oh poor Mayra, she just can’t get it right!”
It made me not want to go anywhere. And so, in those early years, I didn’t go anywhere alone. I felt like I wouldn’t be in control, or that something would happen to me and I wouldn’t be able to take care of my kids.
One day, I called my sister and asked her if there was a place where I could check myself into, a place where I could rest. All I wanted to do was sleep, read, write, eat, maybe do some yoga, and be left alone.
She said, “They do, but they’re very expensive, and I don’t think your insurance would pay for them.” Instead she pointed me to an app on my phone called “Podcasts.”
I had no idea what it was, but when I logged on, my first thought was, “Oh, okay!”
I couldn’t get enough of the “mom” podcasts. It felt like I had taken off the blindfold, and I learned that there were so many moms out there who felt the same way I did.
Little by little I began to have more and more confidence in myself. I didn’t want to be a failure, and what I realized was that nobody saw me as one.
I began doing things with my boys, and felt fully confident that I had everything that I needed to be a “good mom.”
I had to get myself out of that lack mentality. I wasn’t less than a person because I am a single mom.
“Single Mom” isn’t my identity. It is not a category of motherhood that defines me. I’m an incredible mother. I am also a daughter, friend, Toxic Love Coach, and soon to be Reiki Healer. There are so many dimensions to me, so many layers.
We’re a team. This is something that I tell my kids all the time. Now that they are older, they see the difference. Mom shows up to school events, alone. Mom attends the PTA meetings, alone. Mom brings in the snacks. Mom takes us places. Mom is there for bedtime and bath time; mom rushes me to the hospital when I’m having an asthma attack, and stays up with me all night.
Not because I’m a single mom, but because I’m a mom. Period.
So for all you newly single moms out there, although you will find yourself comparing yourself to the other moms at the park, who show up with their partners to have picnics while you sit on the park bench with your goldfish and juice boxes, remember this:
You’re worthy of the dream you’ve painted in your mind, but realize that your children aren’t dreaming about that. Your children want to see you smiling. And when you’re happy, they’re happy.