Dear Single Mama,
I have something to tell you. As you try so hard to hold it in, pull it together and keep it from falling apart; as you get off work, pick up the kids, check their homework, cook and clean dishes... please take a moment to hear me.
After bath time and bedtime, when the quiet of your house is suffocating, as you melt into your chair with a broken heart and dark thoughts, there is something you really need to know.
Those kids, sleeping in their beds, that you worry yourself sick over? They are going to be OK.
Regardless of your broken home, despite the gaping hole in your family, those babies will grow into adults that love, learn and grow. Just like you hope. Just like you pray.
No, things haven't gone as planned. Your fairy tale fractured, but that doesn't mean that you have failed. Because, sweet mama, your love is going to save your family.
Motherhood placed a child at the center of your broken heart, and it is with that overwhelming love for your child that you will find the strength to conquer these dark times.
Your sleepless nights will eventually feel restful. Your worries will settle into peace. Because your babies will be OK. They really will.
How can I be sure?
Because I am the product of a broken home. I am the daughter of a tired, single mom. And though as a child, my little emotions swirled within me like a hurricane, I can tell you one thing for certain: It was the love of my mother that pulled me through.
She is my best friend. My hero. My role model. She is my closest confidant, the standard bearer, my late-night phone call who always answers.
Of course I missed my daddy. I cried and begged for things to go back to the way they were. But where divorce opened up a hole in our family, the love of my mother rushed to fill it.
And I am OK. More than OK. I am happy.
Soon, you will discover that you are capable and strong. That you aren't just sufficient -- you are more than enough.
Give yourself a chance to breathe, single mama. Those babies, sleeping in their beds, that you worry over? They are loved. So much. And they know that.
And in the end, love is always big enough.
A version of this story was published on Mom Babble.