Have you ever heard the story about how if you throw a frog into a pot of boiling water, it will jump right out (literally saving its own skin); but if you place a frog in a pot of water then very slowly turn the heat up over time, it will boil alive… Ick, but wow, right?
That was me. I was the frog in the pot. Until 7 years ago anyway, and it was only because my Momma Bear instincts got activated that I was able to see my situation for what it was and jump out before it was too late. I was shocked. I thought I was a strong person (I actually was, and still am!) but things changed so gradually and I was so committed to helping others and making the best of things that I became blind to what was transpiring.
Thank goodness for my kids. Thank goodness for my visceral, all-encompassing love for them. If I hadn’t felt that they weren’t in the best situation I might never have noticed how small and controlled my world had become. I was simply existing at that point, trying to get through each day with the least amount of drama. It was a sort of survival mode-trying to stay under the radar and keep things smooth.
I’ve been a solo-mom from the get-go. My kids’ dad didn’t have the coping skills to handle parenting so he chose to focus on work and left parenting to me. I completely understand his choice, parenting can be very stressful, but I’m sad for all that he missed. As tough as it was (and still is sometimes), I wouldn’t have wanted to miss a single moment with my kids.
I was a late and somewhat reluctant mom due to health issues. I’d never held a baby until I held my own son. When he arrived, followed by my daughter a couple years later, I was determined to give them the happiest, healthiest lives I could. When I finally realized that we were living in an unhealthy situation that didn’t seem solvable despite all my efforts, I made the difficult choice to take my life apart and start anew. Was I scared? Yep! I was scared 24/7 for a very long time, BUT I’d thought things through when I knew I had to make changes. I had a plan. I knew my goal. I was making progress. And my kids were “My Why“. I wasn’t prepared for any of us to life a half-life so I did everything I could to make it happen and to make my solo-mom-life as smooth as possible.
Seven years later, we are still growing and learning together. We love where we live. We make the most of every opportunity that comes our way. We communicate with each other well. We support each other. I am striving to Lead by Example in every way that I can so that my kids know that they can take chances and follow their dreams. I’ve learned so much and I’m still learning with every new experience and challenge.
This journey to create a new life, a life that I love, hasn’t been all sunshine and roses for sure, but it is 100% worth it!
Sometimes we have to be brave enough take things apart so we can build what we’ve wanted all along…
Always from the heart,