Let’s build a strong community, for our kids sake

Before I became a single mother, I had no idea.

Our society is now made up of many single parent families. They come in all shapes and sizes. Some have plenty of resources, others struggle to meet their family’s basic needs. Some co-parent with the ex-parent and others parent solo. I have known that but I had no idea until I became one. In my case, I’m a solo parent to three awesome kids.

It turns out I am the Easter bunny (shh… don’t tell anyone), the nurse, counselor, mediator, CEO, chauffeur, coach, cheerleader and head of the creativity and silliness department.

It’s the best job in the world. I feel like the luckiest person in the world to watch the growth if these remarkable human beings. My kids, and all kids deserve the love of a family and to be surrounded by a community that loves them too. They deserve positive role models who support them to be the full versions of who they have come here to be.

Most of the people I know live very full lives. Between work, family and hobbies, the days move by quickly. Even so, I encourage people to reach out to each other and connect. Neighbor to neighbor, acquaintance to acquaintance to build strong connections in our community. Not just on Facebook either, pick up the phone, walk next door, invite new friends over for dinner, especially single parents. As you might imagine, they make dinner for their kids solo most nights, I had no idea but it’s just part of the package.

One of the hardest parts of being a single parent is watching your kids struggle, and having to figure out how to help them by yourself. Maybe they are struggling at school or processing feelings about why their dad isn’t in their life. I had no idea how heart wrenching that could feel, until I experienced it.

Yes, single parents are highly capable and loving. And sometimes we get tired or discouraged, just like everyone. It’s just the way it is, and sometimes it’s helpful to just say out loud, “I love my kids more than anything, and I want to see a world where they are surrounded by so much love that they feel strong, loved and whole, because they are.”

Our kids are your future leaders and community members. Let’s build a world for them where they feel loved and supported.

If you see a single parent today, give them a hug. Seriously, they will thank you. And I bet they will pass it on.

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