Since Mother’s Day is coming up, I wanted to share what it was like for me growing up with a single parent. This is probably my fifth attempt at writing this. I struggled on how to end each blog post I’ve attempted: in fear that it was too personal to share.
With the divorce rate increasing, it’s not uncommon to hear that someone is a single parent. My mom is a single parent and raised me and my sister without any help, and I’m so blessed with that. I was inspired to write this because of all the single moms I’ve met this past year that are working towards building their own business to support their family.
Thank you, Mom.
To me, my mom is literally Wonder Woman. It’s crazy to think that at 26, she had your first child, ME! 26 is 4 years away and it’s terrifying to think of a kid entering my life.
Back in 2002 when my parents were separated, my mom, sister, and I moved with our cousins and their family. Don’t get me wrong, it was fun but definitely a full house.
Being a single parent, my mom struggled to take care of us. Starting at age 6, I was staying home by myself. Because my sister was so young, she had to be enrolled in child care. We couldn’t afford for both of us to be in daycare. Just imagine a six-year-old kid having to stay home by themselves during the weekend. I remember having nightmares of CPS finding out about me being home by myself and taking me away from my mom.
During the weekdays wasn’t any easier. After school, I would have to go out to the nail salon with her. Let me tell you all how BORING that was. Luckily, the nail salon my mom was working at was inside the mall. I would spend hours wandering around the mall. Looking through stores and making friends with some workers. I actually made friends with one of the hairstylists at the hair salon that was located in the mall.
Now thinking about it, those were the good old days.
I even lost my GameBoy at the mall too, haha. One time, I got so tired and wanted to take a nap. I was so sick of sleeping on the pedicure chairs so I slept on one of those couches that were placed in the middle of the mall. I woke up to my mom and the mall security talking. Apparently, someone reported to security about a kid being unattended, but one thing I still wondered to this day was “how did they know I was her kid” – did they go down stores to stores asking if they had a daughter sleeping on the couch?
Nonetheless, there was one time that really stuck with me. She cried saying that it was her fault for not being able to provide us with a perfect family. I vividly remember her cry and seeing how apologetic she was for not being able to give me a father figure in our lives. It was something that I never knew I was missing – but was it something that I necessarily needed in my life? Did I really need a “father figure“ in my life?
It wasn’t her fault. I never blamed her for not having a “perfect family”.
To me, I saw growing up with a single parent a blessing. I remember watching TV shows with these kids asking one parent if they could have permission to do something. Of course, one parent would say no, while the other said yes. The story goes on with the parents arguing and concluding with the father saying “your mom is right” blah blah. I remember thinking to myself, I totally want to be a single parent.
Everything would be my rules. I wouldn’t need to consult or run through things with anyone.
My mom was so busy working 7 days a week to provide for us. She did not have time to go out and date. It’s crazy that sometimes I believe that I get my work ethic from my mom. Growing up, my mom was constantly working. There was one time when she tried to enforce “Family Fun Day” on Sunday because it was the only day when she didn’t get off at 9 pm.
With that, I applaud all those single parents out there supporting their family. Mother’s Day has always been and will always be a special day to me because of how strong my mom is. Thank you for being who you are and showing me that I don’t need anyone.