It took me many months, and perhaps even more than a couple of years before I could say the words, “Yes, I am a single mom. I am parenting alone.”
At church, I stayed in the small group for married couples because, after all, I had 3 kids and I had more in common with those working through the parenting journey than with those staying out late at night having single, spur-of-the-moment fun. And, as a homeschool mom, it was easy to forget about my status when I taught co-op classes with the other moms because none of the dads were present during school hours anyway.
So it was “easy” to forget what had happened sometimes. Life took on a regularity, and we were busy. Turning into a single mom had never been in my plans or my thinking. I sure didn’t see it coming. I couldn’t believe that it had happened to me.
Yes, I admit that it took awhile to readjust to the direction that my life had taken, and to embrace it.
But listen: the adjustment does happen.
Fourteen years later, life is pretty normal again.
Yesterday I realized just how normal.
With my kids being teenagers now, I’d been at home working without the car for most of the week as they took turns driving to work or visiting friends.
I was ready to finally get behind the wheel when I dropped off my middle child at work. Because of the heatwave, I could not imagine returning back to my work on the computer on the upper level of our home. I had already tried that for several hours and was not making much progress because of the unbearable heat.
For days the heat had built up without any relief, even at night. The a/c had been chugging along but the temperature on the thermostat had climbed higher and would still need some time to cool down after I’d noticed its poor performance and changed its filter earlier that day.
Where could I go to get a few minutes of relief? I had the car!
That’s when I drove by the quaint movie theater in the upscale shopping area near my daughter’s work. Being just 5:00 PM, all the parking spots available right outside the theater were open.
It occurred to me that the latest Disney movie that I’d been wanting to see was currently playing, so I parked.
“Starts in two minutes,” the man behind the window said.
The tickets were still matinee prices. But go alone? But they had air conditioning. I texted the kids, who had already seen it, and walked inside.
When I found the dimly lit theater, all the seats were empty. I smiled. I took the center seat in the center row. I stretched my legs out on the chair in front of me. Alone. It was a great time and a great movie at a great price.
The adjustment begins slowly, but it happens. After some time, you will even realize that God has plans for you – yes, even good plans. Sometimes it even includes a fun, impromptu movie with air-conditioning.
Sometimes it might include a trip to Israel with Aglow International… but that is another story.
Have you experienced a return to normalcy yet? Or are you still on the way there?