I want to begin this post by wishing my own father a Happy Father’s Day. I told him earlier today that I know that I am one of the lucky ones – my dad has always been a man of faith, kind, loving, patient, interested in me and my siblings (and now in our children), thoroughly loyal and invested in our family, and so very, very good to our mother. I am blessed to have been given the parents (both of them!) that I have.
Now, in addition to my traditional Father’s Day greeting to Dad, I would also like to give a less traditional one to a few oft-forgotten folks.
Happy Father’s Day:
~ To the one who brings home the bacon and fries it up in a pan, every week and every month, without the help of a man.
~ To the one who checks the doors and the windows at 3 a.m. with her son’s baseball bat in hand because something just went bump in the night and it falls on her shoulders to protect her family.
~ To the one who inherits the icky duties such as killing the bugs, squashing the spiders, catching the lizard that found its way inside, and cleaning up the really nasty mess left by a pet . . . or a kid.
~ To the one who tag teams with herself when the days get long and the kids get wild, because there is no one else to tag team with.
~ To the one who throws chicken in the crock pot (again) before heading out to chop down the tall grass and weeds (that grow as fast as the kids), because both jobs must get done today.
~ To the one who is responsible for the cooking, cleaning, laundry, yard work, and bill paying . . . on top of the 40+ hours a week to earn a paycheck . . . on top of the important work and play of being a good parent to precious kids – and who beats herself up because she can’t do all of those things perfectly (or even well) every single day.
~ To the one who watches her kids watching other kids with their dads with a lump in her throat, wishing she could fill that hole in their hearts and knowing that no matter how hard she tries a part of that hole will remain. But she tries anyway.
~ To the one who holds her head high, even when the media stereotypes her and badmouths her and her “broken home” – because she knows better.
~ To the one who carpools kids to extracurricular activities, or who coaches/leads her kids’ activities, or who carries a tremendous burden of guilt because her work schedule and/or budget won’t allow for such activities.
~ To the one who goes to work when she is sick so she can stay home when her kids are sick.
~ To the one who gives up luxuries (and often necessities) so that her kids can have what they want and need.
~ To the one who strives to keep her own dreams alive even as she works to help her children move closer to theirs.
Yes, Happy Father’s Day . . . to all the single moms out there. You are giving it your very best and you are doing a heck of a lot better than you think. Give yourself some credit and keep on keeping on. Oh, and don’t stay up too late, because it all starts up again in the morning!
Another Single Mother