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A Letter to the Single Mom at Christmas

You’re a single mom because you’re divorced; because you’re widowed; because you got pregnant at a young age and never had support; because your children’s father is serving our country and has been deployed more days than he’s been home; because your niece and nephew were in an unfortunate situation and you stepped up by adopting them. You’re a single mom because life isn’t perfect.

Being a single mom is basically hard every day of the year, but it tends to have a little extra sting during the holidays. And I’ll admit this; I would’ve been completely oblivious to the struggles if I wasn’t experiencing it too. So:

Here’s to you, Single Mom, for busting your ass all year long, working 2+ jobs so your kids can have gifts from Santa, Christmas morning. You struggle being a one-income family; you haven’t bought yourself a new purse in 2 years and your year old mascara is dry and flakey. But you don’t care, because your babies are going to have the best damn Christmas they’ve ever seen.

Here’s to you, Single Mom, for seeing Christmas through the eyes of your children. Our kids don’t want to be sad or depressed on Christmas. It’s a magical time for them! They want to decorate the tree, they want to put lights on the house, and they want to make cookies. Man or no man, you climb up in the attic and you get out every Christmas decoration you own and you make memories. Two jobs or no job, you stay up late making cookies. And lots of them. You let the kids make all kinds of mess with the icing and sprinkles because it’s Christmas time, and any frustrations or ‘poor me’ moments you might have, have been tucked away, for their sake.

Here’s to you, Single Mom, for doing it on your own. Your son’s only wish was to have a toy train with a track, and your daughter told Santa she wanted one of those huge doll houses, complete with furniture in every room. Because you’re a bad ass mom, you bought these things for your kids and stayed up into the wee hours of the night, alone, building an ornate train track that circled around the Christmas tree and placed tiny furniture inside the Barbie mansion, just to see your kids face light up the next morning.

And here’s to you, Single Mom, for above all, being selfless this holiday season. No one is helping you get the tree down out of the attic or helping put lights up on the house, no one is assisting you in the clean up after making 12 dozen cookies, and no one is stuffing your stocking. You’ll go through this holiday season devoting your entire being to your kids, much like you do every other day of the year because it’s the only option.

Last year I wallowed in my own grief. I sat and cried like a baby because I was alone. I didn’t take a single picture of my son opening his presents because I was too caught up in my own widow pity party. It doesn’t have to be that way this year, and it won’t be.

So, here’s to you, Single Mom. You aren’t alone. When you’re sitting on the couch with no gift to open, barely able to keep your eyes open from being an elf all night, remember you aren’t alone. You have your kids. You have other moms. You have you. And you are the strongest, most amazing person I know.

Merry Christmas from one Single Mom to another.

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