3 Essentials for Thriving as a Single Mom

“And once the storm is over, you won’t remember how you made it through, how you managed to survive. You won’t even be sure, whether the storm is really over. But one thing is certain. When you come out of the storm, you won’t be the same person who walked in. That’s what this storm’s all about.”
― Haruki Murakami

Storms Come

It’s been about 18 months since my life ground to a halt and I became a single mom. The truth is it’s not something I ever anticipated or aspired to. But it is where I am.

I’m no Pollyanna, and won’t say being a single mom is all sunshine. That would be untrue. But I do believe in staying positive and making the best of where we find ourselves, whether it’s an easy road or not. A thriving single mom is someone I aspire to be.

My boys are all teenagers, which means they’re a ton of fun to be around a lot of the time. But it’s still not easy to have to go it alone. In these past 18 months, I’m discovering 3 things are essential to me as a single mom…

3 Essentials for Thriving as a Single Mom

Keep a sense of humor

  • dust gathers, dishes pile up, and the grass gets a little long — and it’s okay
  • it’s more than okay to say no to things — it’s essential
  • foibles happen: multi-tasking does this. It’s good for my single mom soul to chuckle when it happens, and slow down. Life will be okay, whether we get everything done or not.

Lean on good friends you trust

  • if there is one thing that is most essential to me, it is friendship. We need others, whether it’s for support or to pass on what we have learned from others. When things fall apart — and they do — the best of friends are there to help us pick the pieces up and reassemble our lives

Live intentionally, be intentional about what matters most

  • catching moments of quality time to be with each child each day
  • refreshing the soul with quiet time to regain balance
  • continuing to work toward life goals
  • exercising, sleeping well, and eating healthy to keep energy up

Finding Our Way Through the Storms

I found a journal at the beginning of this journey that says the following:

the butterfly

I think that says it all. And so we learn to live better, and to find our wings to fly.

“The most beautiful people we have known are those who have known defeat, known suffering, known struggle, known loss, and have found their way out of the depths. These persons have an appreciation, a sensitivity, and an understanding of life that fills them with compassion, gentleness, and a deep loving concern. Beautiful people do not just happen.”  ― Elisabeth Kübler-Ross

Red Spotted Purple Butterfly Painting
Red Spotted Purple Butterfly Painting

There are many other necessities and wishes we have as single moms. Can you think of any I missed?

Published by Jennifer Lyn Art

About Jennifer Writer Author Photographer Artist Corporate Marketer Happy Wife & Mom World Traveler Grateful.

13 thoughts on “3 Essentials for Thriving as a Single Mom

  1. Hi Jennifer,
    As the single mother of a grown daughter, I can relate to what you’re saying here. But I would expand it to say these are 3 essentials for living – whether you are a single mom or not. A sense of humor, a community of friends and an intentional approach to life are universal qualities. Thanks for your insight & thanks for sharing your beautiful painting.

  2. That quote by Elizabeth Ross is my favorite. I hope that you can see yourself that way – I guarantee those boys think you are beautiful. I bet they know you are doing a great job as a mom, that’s all that counts!!

  3. To your list I would add: connect with other single moms (they truly know what you are going through), make time as you can to serve others, and develop the habit of counting your blessings daily. When we take time to appreciate all that we have, it minimizes all that we don’t have. Look for the silver lining in every cloud.

    When I became a single mom, I went back to college and got a teaching degree. I have spent the last 10 years teaching children–a job I thoroughly enjoy. None of this would have happened if my life hadn’t taken an unexpected turn. It wasn’t what I had planned, but it has been a good and happy path.

    You’re a wonderful example to others, Jennifer–give yourself credit for that 🙂

    1. Kim, you are such an inspiration. Thank you for sharing part of your journey here. The unexpected turns can have great and unexpected outcomes–I love that. Thank you, thank you, thank you! xo

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