I can testify of the goodness of God. If you can somehow find the strength and will to make it to another day, He will meet you there with brand new mercy, grace and provision. I know that I’m just starting this journey called motherhood to some, but I’ve also made it further down the road that a woman who just put down the little stick with two pink stripes or the woman who gets to take her newborn home from the hospital in a couple of days.
The truth of the matter is, we each stand on a podium of achievement that others hope they will one day ascend to. I can remember looking forward to the day my children and I could have a real exchange of ideas, besides my simply trying to translate screams and tears. My son now says, “Mama, I love you” or “Are you ok mama?” which warms my heart. Whether he’s able to comprehend the words that he speaks to me, I’m not always 100% sure of, but at least he can now articulate it and I eat it up.
If there’s anything that I’ve learned just this year alone, it’s that life is so much more difficult without the wisdom and counsel of God. This time last year, I was an emotional mess. I was 30 lbs heavier than I am now, steadily approaching 300 lbs, inflamed with heartburn and indigestion due to stress, restless, unhealthy and most certainly unhappy. I was a mess.
But even when you’re not mindful of Him, I’m so glad that He’s always mindful of you!
He’s given me peace and rest on my job as well as peace of mind when it comes to childcare. The truth of the matter is that one of the most difficult things for a single working mom to overcome is the need for affordable and trustworthy childcare. Matthew has seen six different childcare providers in his 4 yr lifespan. There were many tearful days and fretful nights, trying to find last minute daycare so that I could go to work the next day. When I had the money to pay, I couldn’t find a sitter, and when I didn’t have the money, again, no sitter. There were many days I was late for work or took time off from work simply because I had no place to take my children while I worked. A lot of people don’t understand the reality of childcare costs in this nation. It’s absurd, just like healthcare costs. It’s not unreasonable for some families to kick out as much as $1400 a MONTH in childcare expenses. Thankfully, I’ve never to pay that much, but in terms of its proportion to my take home pay, I’d say my daycare expenses are almost equal to my mortgage.
But God, in His faithfulness, has seen me through that and helped me to place my children in a church daycare. They are wonderful, loving, professional caregivers who love and respect the children as well as openly communicate with the parents. It is the blessing of my LIFE to have them in this facility!
I’d say the second hardest thing to deal with emotionally as a single working mom is my relationship with their father. lol! He is not a bad man. He is a very loving father. He has a great relationship with all three of his children. But our relationship has been difficult to reconcile. I’ll admit, I can be rather “my way or the highway” in some respects but there are some things that we need not compromise on. Maturity is also a factor that I take into consideration on both our parts. It’s not easy trying to build a relationship and raise two small children simultaneously and when two people are poorly equipped to manage such immense tasks as these, one usually suffers. In our case, our romantic relationship suffered.
The hardest part to deal with now is placing my own personal feelings regarding our romantic relationship aside and accepting him for the father he can be right now. That doesn’t always meet my approval and yes, my expectations are high. My expectations of him as a father are high because the personal standard with which I hold myself accountable as a mother is high. And I know it is said that mothers are more nurturing than fathers but I didn’t get the complete memo and I still believe that fathers serve an equally vital role in their childrens’ upbringing.
I’m not the single mom that says #1, I don’t need a man, and #2 my children don’t need a father.
We need him!
But as I’ve seen God move on so many different levels of this journey, I commit this one to His care also. He is more than able to get me and my two little ones to the appointed destiny He has designed for us. I just have to make sure that I’m present and accounted for at roll call.
And I’ll admit, sometimes, I haven’t felt like showing up.
I felt like the burden of parenting alone was too heavy to bear and that I deserved HELP! And please tell me why the women who care the least about their men have his heart wrapped around their fingers?!! She literally rolls her eyes every time he speaks and is only with him because he hands over his check book, but he marries her and she wants for nothing. REALLY? SERIOUSLY?! lol!
I’m just being real.
And then there’s me.
God, can you see me down here?
This is the year He let me know that He does indeed see me and even if a man doesn’t acknowledge what I do as a mother, all the sacrificing and strain, He has recorded it all and will remember me! What a precious promise that is for me!
He sees me.
Even though there are many days I feel as if my children are raising me instead of the other way around, I’m always blown away with motherly pride when a teacher or parent comes up to me and says, “You have the sweetest children!”
I can’t take the credit for it. I simply know within myself that God is doing something right and my agreement with His will is bearing fruit in the lives of my children.
There will be days when you honestly don’t know how or why you’re a mother and your confidence is on the ground. You feel defeated and so far from where you want to be. You can’t see the finish line. But I want to encourage you to keep making roll call. What do I mean by that? I mean, wake up each day and show up to life. By doing so, you give God another opportunity to move mightily on your behalf. He said, “Ask and it shall be given.. knock and the door shall be opened”. Waking up and facing another day is another way of seeking and knocking. Each day you decide to move forward, you are believing God to turn your circumstances around. I’ve been curled up in a bed of tears and grief within these 4 yrs of motherhood and I’ve also wiped away tears of joy and gratitude.
Prayer Point: Lord, cause every person who may read this blog to find the strength to make roll call. May they trust you for another day. May they learn to look to you as their source of strength and guidance. Don’t let them lose their hope in you. Don’t let them faint. Help them to stand, even with buckling knees. Strengthen the weary, encourage the discouraged and heal the brokenhearted. They will survive. They will grow. They will prevail and they will be victorious in you. May we look toward the hills of each new day with the expectancy that our Help is coming. Amen.