Dear single mums on Mother's Day:
As a single mum to one kid, I understand how lonely and hard Mother's Day can be. There is this expectation and facade that somehow every mother should be waited on hand and foot and taken to an amazing brunch by her gorgeous husband and beautiful children. The older I get, the more clear it is to me that there is no perfect situation, no matter what it looks like on the outside. Whether a mum has a partner in the picture or not, accepting that perfection does not exist is the first step to beginning to enjoy what we have and be present in the moment, because Mother's Day is a day to be celebrated.
Now that I'm parenting on my own, I can appreciate how nice it is to be able to wake up and not feel anxious or frustrated because I had expectations for something — a nice gift from my spouse or child, breakfast in bed, a planned family activity — that didn't come to fruition. It can actually be refreshing to know that you now get to plan your own Mother's Day and that you are in charge of every aspect.
Now that I am in my 40s, it is glaringly apparent that I am lucky to have my son. I have seen so many women struggle later in life to have a baby and not be able to. Even with IVF and the multitude of medical solutions to aid in having a baby, there is no guarantee that every woman will be able to become a mother. Keeping this realisation in mind has made me so grateful to have the chance to be a mum on Mother's Day.
Like with anything, we can decide to make the best of a moment or squander it. For me to personally make the best of Mother's Day, I like to look back and reflect on all of the past Mother's Days I have had and how the holiday has become so much easier over time. I have saved all of my Mother's Day cards and keep a journal to help me reflect on how differently I can feel from year to year.
One thing is for sure: change will come throughout all seasons of life and you will likely not be in the same situation next year that you are in today. Knowing that change is inevitable is another reason to be grateful for what we have today, single mum or not.
I am grateful for my son, for our unique relationship, and for the opportunity to be a mother, regardless of raising him alone. I hope you can find gratitude today and realise what an amazing gift you are to your children today and every day.
A fellow single mum