So with no more ado, here's her view of life as a single parent.
"I don’t fit the stereo type family of 2.4 children complete with doting husband so when people hear my story they often ask what I would change. Well for one the likelihood of a wish fairy skipping down my garden path is about zero. Secondly if the said fairy did knock on my door I would honestly say no thank you and turn her away. Now that might be thought of as odd, bizarre or just a sign of complete madness but it’s the truth.
Let’s pretend for a moment she has skipped down my path and has granted me a wish. It’s just one wish these days as the hard times have affected everyone. Now the first obvious choice, for someone in my circumstances, would be a time machine to undo my single mum status and second would be money. Neither of which I would change. Why? When I divorced 8 years ago I suddenly had to find a home, a job and face hurdles complete with a 2 and 6 year old. What I learnt though, was to change my perspective of things. Yes it’s no secret that being a single mum is damn hard work but once I viewed hurdles as challenges it became easier. I had to learn to believe in myself. Not an overnight process granted. But as I faced each challenge I realised I was still alive, still standing and not beaten so I grew stronger. With each challenge this would and does happen.
Thinking back 8 years if someone said to me ‘they’re not hurdles they are challenges ‘I would probably cheerfully punched them. At the time they’re certainly weren’t hurdles, they were huge great mountains to me. For example I had passed my driving test many years previous but never drove. The thought of having to drive was a massive mountain. Anyone else couldn’t understand why I saw it as a mountain as it was an everyday thing to them. I had no confidence to drive, let alone with my two precious children in the car. When I found a home, which was out of the town, and a job I had to tackle the mountain head on. I would leave so early to avoid normal traffic my children would have to eat their breakfast on route. The car would be full of toys and books to keep two youngsters happy as we got everywhere too early or we had to wait for the traffic to get quieter. I would come home each night and finally breathe normally, I had done it. A few weeks in I no longer saw it as a hurdle. It was a challenge I had won. I had become stronger.
If I was still married I might not experienced a complete lack of money. Another challenge. I have had, and still do have times, when I don’t know where the next meal is coming from. The lack of money for basic things like food can completely bring you down. I got through it though and learnt how little money I can actually live on. I have learnt what actually is important and what things I can live without.
Of course my children were all a part of this. They have learnt the value of money, the value and importance of good friends and how to view life’s hurdles as challenges. I look at my children and feel proud.
If I was still married I would probably never be as strong as I am now. I wouldn’t appreciate and love the smaller things in life. Through the last 8 years I have grown, changed my view of life and learnt to love myself and my accomplishments and all because I am a single mum doing it my way.
Someone once said to me that women are like tea bags. You don’t know how strong they are till they are in hot water."
Okay...now you can go and look at Confessions of a Single Mum.