WHAT WAS YOUR JOURNEY LIKE BEING A SINGLE MOM?
Single motherhood - the leap of faith to give us a new beginning was the most exhilarating and scary time I remember. I look back and I can only visualize myself closing my eyes saying a prayer and holding her as tight as I could. No manual to lead the way. No idea how to deal with my own fears while reassuring her of things I only prayed would be ahead. I didn’t have every other weekend off or the illusion of co-parenting due to addiction so my commitment was all in from day one. The hardest times were when I was sick, sad or scared and could not find a place to hide. The greatest time was when I realized how strong we had grown together in trust, love and faith in each other. No two single moms walk the same path but we all face the same bumps in the road. Exhaustion, frustration, financial uncertainty, and the speed at which the years pass while our only focus is survival. In the end I hope I have shared the strength, growth and unwavering love with her as all moms do all the while doing my very best to make the many struggles appear seamless to her.
WHAT DO YOU FEEL ARE THE CHALLENGES OF MOTHERHOOD?
Time management, organization and the pressure I put on myself to give others the illusion that I had any of either. Also, hiding addiction was one of the greatest challenges I faced and felt I needed to guard my daughter from it. Motherhood can hold you into the relationship that you want so badly out of. Nothing makes sense and the days slip away. One crisis at a time putting a smile on my face hoping she would never see through it and wonder why the doors are locked and mommy and the dog sleep in her room every night!
WHAT ADVICE WOULD YOU GIVE TO A NEW MOM?
Get rest when you can. Forgive yourself daily for all the mistakes you think you have made. Ask for help as often as you can, everyone wants to help but no one knows how you are truly feeling under the smiles you paint on.
WHAT ARE YOUR FAVORITE MEMORIES WITH YOUR OWN MOTHER?
My favorite times with my mom are the most honest times, when in the security of a relationship no one else could ever duplicate, it is okay to laugh louder at things you would never admit you found funny, be dressed in clothes you would never want people to know you still have, eating things you would never have in your own home. It all makes sense when I walk through my mom’s front door and that is something I am so grateful for to this day!
WHAT WOULD YOU LIKE YOUR OWN MOTHER TO KNOW ABOUT YOUR CHILDHOOD?
I listened more then she thought, it may have seemed we were always at odds I agreed with far more of what she said then I ever wanted to admit!