Friday, April 24, 2009

A Shout-Out To Single Mothers Everywhere

My husband travels about once a month for business. He's usually gone three days or so. Those three days often seem like an eternity. And I think in those moments I realize just how much my husband and I truly do work together when it comes to our kids.

He is the official "bath guy." When my first was born, my husband worked a lot of night shifts and often missed bedtime and bath time. It was all me. But since he's moved up the rungs, he is lucky enough to be here most nights. He now does the majority of the baths, unless he's out of town. We do our girls baths every second night (their skin gets too dry otherwise!) though in the summer it's every night what with sunscreen and sweat and bug spray. So, last night was bath night and I was called up to the plate. My girls love the bath. They play in there forever. Well, not my eldest. She now reads in there. It's not a big deal by any stretch, but it's one thing I can hand off, usually.

Then there's just the general fact that I'm now working all day, making all the meals, doing baths and bedtime routine. There is nobody to hand off to while I do something else and they take care of another element of our parenting tasks.

And so I started thinking about all of the single moms out there who slug it out, on their own, every day. They get up and make breakfasts and lunches and get their kids out the door. They then work all day and fight traffic to get home and get their children. They rush in the door to make dinners and take kids to classes and courses, help with homework and get kids in the bath or shower. They kiss their children goodnight all by themselves and then crash into their beds, I imagine, to start it all over the next day. No one to hand off to if you need a moment. No one to lighten the load.

I was raised, mostly, by a single mother. My Dad saw us a few times a year, maybe three or so, even though he lived fifteen minutes away. When my Mom married my stepfather, well, let's just say he was more hindrance than help. So, it was my Mom. She had help from my Granny, which was awesome, but mostly she brought us up on her own. She had a good job and made good money, but had long hours. She brought work home at night, and waited til we were in bed to do that work.

And now that I'm a mother myself, and I have these brief moments of single motherhood, it makes me realize what all of the single mothers out there do everyday. And it makes me feel like a lazy, whining schmuck. What the heck do "I" have to complain about??? I can't even commiserate by saying I have a husband that isn't very involved or that barely shares the burden. He is and does.

So, after my last three days of being a part-time single mom, I want to say a loud BRAVO to the full-time single moms out there that make it through countless days on their own and not only just "get by" but make those days memorable and fun and loving for their children. I really don't think they get enough KUDOS and they deserve them.

So, way to go single moms. You are truly unsung heroes to your children, and to us moms out here who realize all that you do, and that we couldn't, every day.


  1. I have those very same thoughts (surprising, I know! LOL) when dh is away. I just don't know how single moms do it! I always say that our family is like a house of cards, each member/card critical; we depend so much on dh that when he is gone, the whole house crumbles.

  2. Oops, sorry, that comment was from me, signed in under dh. LOL

  3. Well I will also add yay for single dad's too! Since my husband is BEYOND carrying the load while I am away at school. 5 days a week he is making lunches, bathing kids, doing laundry, making supper, being a soccer dad PLUS working a full time job. He is running kids to orthodontists and staying home and missing work when kids are sick. I don't know how he does it!!!! :-)