Please read Unbroken Home: the challenges of being a single parent first and then please come back.
It has been a while since I’ve written. Sadly, I’m divorced now and a single-parent.
I’ve been thinking a lot about how I got here. There were the usual interpersonal dysfunctions but there were tell-tale behaviors I chose to ignore early on. That’s where I’m stuck. I’ve made some solid decisions that have propelled me from illness to survivorship and yet I failed to chose the perfect life-long friend and mate? how?!
It’s really simple. I let fear guide the most important decision I can make. I was rushing. Rushing to get married because I wanted to be married before I died; rushing to the altar because I wanted my dying grandfather to see me marry, which he didn’t as he passed a week before the wedding.
I know the school of thought that says there are no mistakes and everything is for a reason. We have a beautiful 19-month old baby girl and I wouldn’t have it any other way. But ignoring serious signs of trouble when you’re dating is just bad decision-making. Oh, yes, it was a decision! I didn’t want to die alone at any cost.
But now, I’m back at square one and breaking free from an abusive relationship (and mending a broken heart) has proven to be more mentally challenging than battling cancer. Taking time to heal, being grateful, being present, and practicing patience– lessons, it would appear, I’m learning by hook or by crook.
While searching for support, I was surprised at just how many survivor single moms and divorced ladies are out there. Moreover, those who have had multiple cancers and have several children to care for alone; G-D bless them!
On one hand this experience has made us strong but it also left some of us more vulnerable than before. Still, I have to give myself kudos for getting out of an abusive relationship before it completely wiped my identity and altered my daughter at the core.
Reading the essay Unbroken Home reaffirms that I am not alone in life or in parenting.
I hope you’ll slow down, too, and know that no matter what, you are not alone.