Life sometimes leaves you questioning reality. You’re told to do good in high school so that you can get into a good college, and then do well in college so that you can get a good job. Next you’re told to embrace the entry level position offered right out of college so that you can build your resume. However, after more than a decade of skill set building and networking and you’re still not where you want to be in life you begin to wonder what went wrong. Have your dreams turned into delusions?
As the parent of a special needs child, I’ve had to modify the route I planned to take to get to my dreams but I didn’t think I would have to forfeit them altogether. The reality is that spending 9 hours a day in an office does not work for me because I have to get my son on and off the school bus 2 hours before most jobs want you to leave. Of course I am always looking for freelance projects and jobs that will allow you to work a portion of the day from, but they are difficult to find.
Am I to assume that the “Good Life” is reserved for people that don’t have special needs children? Hmmm… I didn’t get that memo when I was racking up student loan debt. I did read in the somewhere that “the race does not go to the swift, but to those who endure to the end.” On that note, I’ll continue to try to put together the pieces of this dream that used to be crystal clear as I don’t want them to shatter and be lost forever.
Where do I start? There’s so much that goes into being a parent. However, the load triples when you have to be a single parent.
I’ve been a single parent for 11 years as my son’s father died when my son was an infant. On one hand I can say that I am used to being a single parent since I’ve always been one, but on the other hand it is entirely true that I am still uncomfortable with it. Being a parent has so many layers. You’re the provider, comforter, disciplinarian, chef, fashion director, maid, doctor, tutor, speech therapists, friend, personal banker in addition to everything else that is necessary to keep your child happy. And of course I can’t forget to mention that we have to update our skill set as our children grow.
In addition, I’ve had a few detours in life that have altered my career path and completely prolonged my journey to “ultimate success,” however I am optimistic that I’ll eventually get there.
I wrote this piece as a salute to all of the single parents in the world. No matter if you’re in the United States, Africa, Brazil, Italy or the United Kingdom; our journey is still the same. A big hug to all of you.
Time, one of the few things in life that is irreplaceable. You can’t buy it, you can’t produce it and you certainly get a refund for any of it that is wasted. With all of these things being well known facts, it’s important to make note of how we process the huge clock in our lives.
In the time I spend alone with my thoughts I’ve found that I’m always super conscious of how quickly time moves. With that being said, I find myself stressed a lot and often times am unsatisfied with the timeframe in which my goals are accomplished. My childhood dream was to become a journalist. That’s what I earned my degree in and worked as for a few years during and after college. However, life happened and I was forced to put that dream on shelf for what I thought would only be for a little while. Eleven years later I’ve looked up and realize I’m still trying to fulfill that dream.
To be completely honest I’m pursuing it more aggressively in the past couple of weeks then I have in previous years; I just feel like it’s time. My son is eleven now and I’ve been a single parent for that long as his father died eleven years ago. Please… there’s no pity party necessary. Instead I am diligently searching for opportunities to make my dreams a reality. I’ll update you on my progress as it is made. Meanwhile, be mindful of how you spend your time.