Guest Post: What Being a Single Mom Means to Me

This article is the seventh in a series of guest posts. I have invited a variety of friends and family members to contribute to my blog. I have chosen them based on two things: 1) I personally go to them for help; and 2) I am fascinated by their unique parenting challenges, because I want to hear how they make “okayest” work for them. 

Today’s author is Betsi, a young single mother whom I met at church. She correctly pointed out that I’ve not yet had any guest posts by single mothers! Despite being something like a decade and a half older than her, I greatly enjoy Betsi’s company, and, furthermore, I respect her very much. She also quite eerily reminds me of Sarah, my best friend from high school (featured here, and here, and here, by the way). Is it her mannerisms? Her style? Doesn’t matter, cuz Betsi is one-of-a-kind anyway. Here’s Betsi:

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Almost a year ago Mrs. Okayest asked me to write a guest blog on my experience of motherhood. Over the last year I sat down to write this many times to no avail.

Until recently, that is.

You see, I am a single mother… well I am, but I am also not. I am single in the relationship sense, but I most certainly am not a single mother. I am surrounded by support. I may not have the fathers of my children supporting them, but I do have a village.

My village is composed of many people; my parents, my brothers and sisters and their significant others, my mom friends, my dad friends, even my childless friends.

I’ll give you an example: Both of my parents were in Germany for 10 days recently, leaving me alone to fend for myself. During this time I had my 6 month postpartum pap smear, a therapy appointment, and a psychiatrist appointment. I had 3 different friends watch my eldest on the 3 different days. Each friend took her longer than they had to and did some fun activity with her that she had never done before.

When I asked my facebook friends if anyone could watch Z, my eldest, they jumped on the opportunity. I had many offers of help. (The would watch baby E too if she weren’t so fussy and still exclusively breastfeeding!)

I have an amazing support system, I could not have asked for better people to be a part of me and my children’s lives. I know we are loved and cared for.

So, yeah, I don’t have a boyfriend or a husband and neither of my children’s fathers are involved at all, but I am by no means a single mother.

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Have an idea for my next post? If you’d like to write for my blog, please send Okayest Mom a message via my Facebook page. Let me know what angle you’d like to see featured here and why you’d be the best writer for the job. Currently, I’m especially interested in writings about special needs, race, or something written from the male perspective. 

My Thoughts, as My Husband Leaves Me Alone with Three Toddlers for Five Days

OHMYGOSHDONTGODONTGO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

PLEASEPLEASEPLEASEPLEASE!!!!!!!!!!!

SOMEONEHELPME!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!HELP!HELP!HELP!HELPME!!!!!!!!!!

His five-day-long business trip is bearing down on me like a freight train. I’ll be honest: I’m terrified. I’m not one of those amazing independent women who has it all together. I really really depend on Mr. Okayest. (Maybe I’m codependent. No, wait, nevermind. If I remember anything from my B.S. in Psychology, co-dependent does NOT mean what it sounds like it means.) I depended on him waaaaay before kids. I don’t do well without him. He is my rock, my anti-anxiety drug, and my dose of oxytocin.

My 35th birthday present from Mr. Okayest is this oxytocin molecule. Science can be sexy.

My 35th birthday present from Mr. Okayest is this oxytocin molecule. Science can be sexy.

How will I not crack?

How do single mothers do it, when they have no backup coming home at 5:30 PM every day?

I love my in-laws. I love them. They are swooping in like superheroes while their son is away.

How will my child-induced carpal tunnel/tendonitis wrist not break?

What will become of Twin B, who only ever relaxes for his Daddy? (Um, I can’t imagine where he got that trait.)

What will become of my oldest son, who is exactly like his non-biological father in every way except his appearance? He is a Daddy’s Boy, through and through, and he will have tantrums that will blow the roof off this house.

What will become of my naughty and very large dog, who is much naughtier when Alpha Male isn’t home?

How does anyone survive five days without seeing his handsome face?

I need to learn how to work video phone features on my new smartphone, like NOW.

Maybe I should throw a ladies’ night while he is away, after the kids are in bed. I can call it “Junk Food and an 80s Movie in my Funky Basement.” Would anyone come? Oh, dang it, I have never actually turned on that projector by myself. He needs to show me. Why have I never done it myself?

I love my in-laws. I love them.

What the heck is wrong with me? So-and-so’s husband is deployed, and she’s fine. She has pneumonia and four kids and she’s still fine. So-and-so’s husband…. Oh, stop doing this to yourself!

The children will not get bathed for five days. They won’t.

I hope none of the kids (or the dog) breaks a nail. I have never cut any of their nails. Mr. Okayest is responsible for 80 nails – 100 if you count the dog’s nails. (And 120 during pregnancy when I couldn’t reach mine. Oh, wait, I only couldn’t reach my TOEnails, so that would make it 110 that he had to cut.) Oh, don’t act so judgy, readers. I told you I’m just okayest.

He should mow the lawn before he leaves. I have never done that either.

Do I remember how to open the garage door if the power is out? Maybe he should show me the gas shut-off again too. Do we have gas? OHMYGOSH WHATIFTHEPOWERGOESOUT?

I am SO going to watch all those Netflix movies that he won’t watch with me. I’m thinking indie.

I wish I could drink.

Oh, thank goodness his stupid alarm won’t ring at 4:30 AM every single day.

At least I can eat boxed mac n’ cheese for dinner.

 

 

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Spellcheck had a field day with this one.

Note to potential stalkers: I waited to post this until *after* he came back. Duh.