to my kids – the raw truth of being a single mom

There are many days where I wake up and I think I’ve failed.

Let’s just start with that, okay? I just do. Even though life is rightly-ordered now and healthier, this wasn’t the story I had planned for your life. So know I struggle with that, okay? Because sometimes that struggle leaves me in my bathroom, behind the door, with tears in my eyes while you knock on the door saying mom? mom?  You won’t know that because I have this mom superpower of sucking in the emotion and replying with the most normal yes? to you.

Except sometimes I know you see it.

Sometimes you’ll ask me are you okay mom?

Because I think you know.

In fact, honestly, I know you know.

I know you see me. Holding it all together all the time. Managing everything – day in and day out and day in and day out and day in and day out again and again and again. I can’t hide that from you. I can’t hide the times when I say guys! There is only one of me.

I’m sure that stings. I don’t mean for it to sting. I think I just need to say it but you don’t need a reminder of the obvious – that it’s just me in this house. I’m sure this isn’t the story you wanted either. I am sorry about that.

But let’s get somethings straight. Okay?

I sure do love you.

Like I love you so much that I do it all by myself. If I didn’t love you as much as I did I’d probably be in some villa in Italy sipping fancy wine. Or on a beach in the South Pacific. Or on Survivor. But, I am not. I am here. In your life day after day. Loving you. Showing up for you. Caring for you. Fighting for the best for you. Not giving up on you. Making ends meet for you.

Tucking in tears for you.

You are so worth it.

I want you to proud of me.

I don’t know why that matters, but it kind of does. I watch this shows where kids talk about their moms and they are so proud when they say my mom was a single mom and she did it all. Those adults who realize that are always so proud of their mom, their mom who probably shed all those tears, but they finally see the awesome and giving in her. Because, guys, I really am doing it all for you right now.

You know why?

You are exponentially worth it.

You are so worth it that sometimes I give up on sleep for you. I give up on things for you. I work until one am and get up at five am for you. I do the hard things for you. I go to teacher’s conferences and doctor’s appointments. I clean and wash and do the laundry. I fight hard for you.

I may not be perfect.

In fact, trust me, I’m not. I have a temper and am impatient and am sometimes super super tired.

You may not have the coolest lunches. The house may not be the fanciest. We may never get to Disneyworld. We may never get the newest van. But you know what we will have? A whole bunch of showing up and trying and loving.

You are worth it.

So we will create this story together. Day after day after day. Days of me wandering out of the house when the bus comes and waving to you from the window. Nights of me picking you up at work. Afternoons of us doing homework. Filling out college applications. Waiting for texts. Wiping away your tears on birthdays. Trying my hardest to give you the best childhood I can. I may be tired, but kids – I will never quit on you. Never.

You are priceless and wonderful and valuable.

So if you knock on the bathroom door and it takes a second for me to respond know that I am gathering my strength.

For you.

With love from your imperfect, but trying and showing up mom.


to read my story and to learn how you can find joy in the life you have now grab my book

The Brave Art of Motherhood 

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