I thought I knew what loneliness was. Then I became a single mom and it brought the feeling of being alone to a whole new level. I’m not saying only single parents are lonely. But I am saying many of us go through life, then hit a road bump and wonder why we thought it was bad before this stage.
We wonder how we got here. We wonder why we thought the past was so hard because nothing could compare to this pain. It could be a split, a death, a break-up with a friend, or having an empty nest. Now that we are in the middle of a pandemic and trying to figure out what a new normal is going to look like for us, so many parents are struggling.
I miss my friends but am so lucky my kids are here
Right now, there’s little support because this is all so new. We are all keeping our distance from each other, and we are all feeling the effects of having most of our usual outlets unavailable to us. I miss seeing my friends.
I miss getting my hair done and talking with my hair dresser for two hours while she touched up my roots and gave me highlights. I miss getting out just because I need to breathe different air and see different faces.
These things are all a very minor price to pay to get the health of our country back and I have no problem making these sacrifices. That doesn’t mean it’s not hard. Also, it’s okay to complain about not getting your daily dose of your favorite coffee shop, or being able to watch your child play baseball.
My kids are getting me through this
But if there is one thing that is getting me through all of this with a bit of grace, it’s having my kids home with me. Yes, we have moments where they push me to my limit.
Just yesterday I noticed there were no clean drinking glasses on the shelves even though I’d emptied the dishwasher. Apparently they were all in my kids’ rooms growing mold and algae from sitting with spoiled liquids in them. The dirty clothes and towels still don’t make it into the hamper and they’ve decided there’s really no need to close the bags of chips or crackers.
Despite all that– the mess, the backtalk, the wanting to hang out with friends as I preach (yet again) as to why we need to wait a bit longer, I am so happy they are there with me. I can’t imagine sitting through this alone like some parents are.
I am one of the lucky ones. I know that my kids are home and they are healthy. They don’t have jobs they have to attend because they might lose them and not be able to pay their rent. They are able to sleep down the hall from me every night and they are there when I get up in the morning.
My kids are all the company I need right now
They are the company I need and I’ve found great comfort in cooking and watching television with them. I’m not sure I’d be holding it together if they weren’t here. I’m not sure I would be able to deal with the isolation and lack of communication with the outside world.
I’m not sure I’d be able to sleep as well as I am without them in their rooms, or downstairs watching late night television and sharing a bag of microwave popcorn.
Seeing and being with my kids every day since this started has been my saving grace. It’s been the one constant I can count on. Even if someone is in an off mood and we desperately want to get away from each other, we know deep down we love one another and we are going to get through this together.
I’m so aware that not everyone has this gift, and I’m thankful every day that I have that bond with my children. Yes, the pandemic of 2020 will forever be ingrained in my soul as a really tough, scary, unknown time. But, it will also be remembered as a time when I got really close to my children and they got really close to each other.
I will remember this time as a time we got through together
It will be remembered as a time when I felt so thankful my children were still living at home with me and I knew I got to see and spend time with them each day. It will be remembered as the year we made new traditions and got through really hard moments, together.
And it will be a time I look back on and think, I was okay. I was okay during that mess because I had my kids and they made it okay. Not everyone can say that, but I can. There isn’t a day that goes by that I don’t realize just how lucky I am that they are making this new normal so much better just by being here.
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Here is How I Got My Kids to Do Things With Me Again Katie reveals her secret about this important family gaol.