Jasmine's Place Issue No. 15 - February 2015 - Page 31

In 2004, my husband received a job offer in another state that started immediately. He took the job and moved to Ohio, while I stayed in upstate NY with our two children and tried to sell our home. Our baby was very ill and my dad had just passed away. day - give baths, read at bedtime, help with homework, do the laundry, sort clothes, make dinner, take care of dishes, pack daycare or school bags, attend medical appointments, communicate with teachers, shop for clothes and groceries, clean the house, and much more. During the week I was it. Everyone depended on me. Employing a babysitter is a luxury most single moms can’t afford, so they don't have any opportunity to attend a Bible study, book club, or a rare night out with peers. They aren’t well rested because it is on their shoulders to be alert in case anyone wakes up during the night. Their job is 24/7, 365 days a year. These moms often do it without encouragement from the outside world. I was taking care of feeding, diaper changes, homeschooling my kindergartner, laundry, bill paying, and preparing the house to sell. If the baby woke up, I had to be the one to tend to her. Because she had breathing difficulties and nearly died, I barely slept. That summer it rained nearly every day, requiring me to frequently mow our 2 acres. There were days I threw the riding lawnmower into 5th gear so I could cut grass while the baby slept, leaving my 6 year old as baby monitor lookout. It was the hardest season I’ve ever known. For me, it was just that, a season. But many moms take care of their family without the support I have in my husband. They are single moms who work full time, sometimes with more than one job. Some also attend classes to further their education or finish a degree they started before having children. Yet the same mommy duties exist for them each My takeaway after my experience as a solo parent for a season was to be an encouragement to single moms. I confess, I’m not always sure how, and sometimes moms decline my offers, perhaps not wanting to appear to need help. It’s not about that. I want to help. I hope you do, too. Their job is 24/7, 365 days a year. These moms often do it without encouragement from the outside world. JASMINE'S PLACE 31