We have to talk.
It’s Friday night, and I’m sitting on the floor eating caramel corn. By myself. My kids are with their dad, and all I can hear are the voices in my head.
How the crap did I end up HERE?!
Do you ever ask yourself that? Like, do you ever just look at your life and think, are you serious, God?
I mean, weren’t we supposed to go to college, meet a guy, marry him, have some kids, and buy a minivan? I mean, wasn’t that what everyone else was doing? Wasn’t that what our own parents did?
Wasn’t marriage supposed to be a walk in the park?
So, how come so many of us are stranded in the burned brier of the Enchanted Forest? And even more critically than that, how the crap do we get out?
Three years ago, I was lost in these same questions. But, three years ago, while raging fires engulfed me, you turned around.
You showed me how to slay dragons I never knew existed in a land I never actually believed in. With grit and honor, you taught me how to pursue a castle that contained my most valuable treasure: my heart.
You allowed me to become the heroine of my own tearful story.
Yes, you did.
So, today, I not only dedicate this letter to you, but I’m also going to carry it with me, right back into the red-hot realm of reality.
Single Mamas, are you comin’?
This is how we get out:
We take HARD life one moment at a time.
We wake up each day giving thanks.
We rejoice in the laughter of our children. We encourage their tender hearts with kind words. We take them to church so they can experience Jesus. We raise them in an environment of character, discipline, and respect.
We teach our daughters self-worth because we know the tragedy of being without it. We teach our sons how to treat women. With dignity. We instill greatness inside every son and daughter.
We grant patience for those who don’t understand our situation.
We always take the high road because we have the power to do that.
We fight for righteousness.
We comfort our young and we cover our old.
We look in the mirror and we smile.
We offer our pocketbook to other single mamas.
We pray for ourselves.
We pray for each other.
We ask for help.
We blare, “Fight Song,” from our mom-van and scream it out loud until the veins in our necks pop out. Uh, maybe that’s just me.
We do not back down. And we do not feel sorry for ourselves.
We laugh and we give ourselves grace, especially when we forget that our son had basketball practice on Monday night.
We go to work filled with JOY because our babies deserve the best, and it begins with our hard-earned dollar.
We anticipate the nonsense, but we don’t acknowledge it.
We mature ourselves and we RISE up out of these fairy tale ashes, sword in hand, boldly sharing our TRUTH.
We forever, starting today, pursue an everlasting kingdom containing our most valuable treasure: our heart. Yes, we do.
Single Mamas, life is a different kind of HARD, but that’s the beauty. VICTORY comes in the HARD!
You gotta believe me! You also have to believe that after sitting on the floor for four hours, I can no longer feel my legs, and the caramel corn is most certainly gone.
Seriously though, I am so blessed by all of you, and I am SO proud of us. We are doing an amazing job.
Oh, and hey, if by chance you’re still wondering how to get out…
Sweet Single Mamas, the voice in my heart is sayin’, you already are.
Time for sleep.
P.S. Married Mamas, you are not off the hook. We need you, too. Please find us and befriend us. Unless we’re at the grocery store with our kids. In that case, turn and run. Anywhere else, here’s the hidden truth: I think you need us, too.
Jenn Gedden is a working, single mama of two kids. Despite her insanely busy schedule and non-existent computer skills, Jenn persisted at creating and designing a website for her blog, You Are On Time. “I just wanted a place for all women in every circumstance of HARD life to gather and be inspired. God’s grace and provision has allowed me to do that,” she says. Jenn invites you to come alongside her by subscribing to her blogs’ mailing list and by “Liking” her Facebook Page: You Are On Time. This is Jenn’s second guest post with Des Moines Mom’s Blog. Her first was, An Open Letter to Our Sisterhood.