A recent Focus on the Family broadcast on single parenting stirred up memories for me. It has been over thirty years since my single parenting years, but those were critical years in the life of my children.
As Christians we all have periods in our walk where we find life to be overwhelming. It was during this time that faith can become stronger.
This was the first time in my life where I really was alone, but I managed to get a teaching degree and start teaching. God never abandoned me and I just took life one day at a time.
Honestly, I think being a parent in a two family household is a big job, but doing it alone – it is even more difficult. There’s not a manual that comes with parenting.
There are many reasons that people end up parenting alone not just divorce. Death, abandonment in a relationship and even illness can cause it. In a way, military spouses often parent alone due to deployment.
Whatever the reason, this important responsibility wasn’t meant to do alone. And I am here to say, it doesn’t have to be even if you don’t have a spouse.
That radio program on Focus on the Family was such an encouragement for single parents today. Robert Beeson was speaking about his book Going Solo. His story may be similar to yours or someone you know. His testimony was authentic and he had some great insights as a single father. I also liked that he had founded something called the Solo Parent Society. What a great resource. They have a Facebook page also.
Focus on the Family is an invaluable resource for parents and marriages. Check out their podcasts to see what I mean.
While I urge some caution using online groups, they are great for resources and support when needed. So I suggest not to use these groups as a crutch.
I didn’t have online groups I could join. But during this time, my faith grew. God was always available when friends were not. I got through some very challenging times.
Getting my degree was something my own children respected. We learned to do without some things and survived. Kids don’t need more things. As a former educator, I know children crave love, support and most especially your time. Time spent doing things like camping or hiking help build relationships and memories that last.
For those that know a single parent, your support or maybe just your willingness to listen could be just what they need. I can’t tell you all the times that friends showed up at the right time. I always look for opportunities to do the same to others.
Educators are great resources. If your children are in school, they probably spend more time with your child than you do. Ask them for assistance or places to get the help you need.
As a former educator, I know children crave love, support and most especially your time.
A life centered on God is the best legacy you can pass on. Find a strong faith community to join. It doesn’t mean life will be easy, but it will certainly make it better.
That’s another reason I wrote my book As Angels Sing. The main character raises her special needs child alone for ten years. My journey was slightly different, but I wanted other mothers to see how faith and hope in God can get us through difficult times. I found joy even when going through challenges.
Single parents of special needs children can have a greater load and are to be admired.
Childhood goes by so quickly. Embrace it and accept help from others. Most importantly, know God loves you and put your hope in him. He won’t let you down.
Til next time,