This has been one tough winter, with all the snow, ice, freezing rain and frigidly cold temperatures I am pretty much over winter at this point. I am sure everyone can attest to that. Aside from the constant digging myself out from under mountains of snow, (and let me just say, if I never see snow again it will be too soon) what has made it even worse for me were school closings or my little one being sick. And he was sick a LOT this season. He has had Conjunctivitis, colds, flu, you name it. If there was a germ floating around he caught it. My poor little guy just couldn’t catch a break, and neither could I.
Being a single mom and not having a large support network, I had to end up taking lots of time off work to care for him. For a while I felt like I was barely there, and when I was working I worried about getting him to doctor appointments, cost of medication, and just his overall health from week to week. This, however, did not go over well with my supervisor. As the tension grew in the workplace due to the needs of my child, I began to question….how do other single parents do it? What do other moms do if they do not have a large network of family and friends that are available to care for their child/ren at the drop of a hat or the extra income for child care outside of daycare? If I can only clone myself life would be so easy!
I then realized, it is time for me to develop a natural support system. As a Care Coordinator I often try to help the families that I work with build natural supports to help with the behaviors of their children in many different ways. Developing a good support system and having them understand your needs and concerns will help the family work smoother as a result. Then I thought… okay, how do I do that for myself? Everyone I am close with works and already has their own family demands. I have never really been the type to reach to far out of my comfort zone to ask for help. I’m superwoman, right? I can do EVERYTHING! Well, reality set in and humbled me. It is time I reach out. I need help. I really can’t do this ALONE. Time for me to build that village people keep taking about.
So I decided to think outside the box and join a Mommy Group. Even though the discussion boards were interesting and fun, that didn’t seem to be the answer. A lot of the groups were moms that had more time to get together and meet in the morning or afternoons. So I thought maybe I can use my skills and love of helping others and try to develop a Single Mom Support Group of my own. The idea of the support group came at a time that felt like a crisis and from a selfish mindset. However, as I put more thought into it, I thought this may be a great way for single moms to come together and get support around all kinds of issues and struggles and develop friendships. As of right now, this idea is only in the planning process. I hope to soon get this out of the idea stage and into the action stage. Whatever the case may be, I am still in search for answers and ideas. I have also learned to break out of my self-fulfilling prophecy thinking I can do it all and reach out a bit more in the meantime. I guess this is what motherhood is all about, the constant search for antidotes to the daily process of the struggles of parenting.