What people see

Single moms are very dear to my heart. It makes sense since I am one. On my journey of motherhood without a spouse I’ve learned there are a lot of different single moms out there. Each situation is pretty unique. I’ve met girls who are completely on their own. Their families have disowned them and it’s basically just them and their baby. I know the girls that have child support from their baby daddy. There’s really just so many different aspects to each individual family dynamic.

For me, I’m the single mom with a lot of help. That’s kinda what I want to focus on in this post. Any single parent has to do the job of two. They have to nurture and love while providing. They have to carry the emotional and physical burden of being a parent all on their own. Add on different circumstances and the job description isn’t too desirable. I think it’s really easy to look at the mom’s that have no support and think to pray for them. We see them and think oh my gosh she needs some encouragement. She needs love and prayers. How can I help her? You aren’t wrong in thinking those things. That momma does need some life spoken into her situation. Those are the single parents that we naturally think of.

I think there are also a lot of single parents that have a lot of support. Thankfully, I’m one of those parents. My family and friends are amazing. My mom watches my kids three days a week for free. That lightens my financial burden so much. My friends are always willing to watch my kids if I need it. I have so much love surrounding my family it’s really quite incredible. I think the enormous support can be a double edge sword though. Let me explain.

With support comes this appearance that you’ve kinda got it all figured out. I’ve heard things like You’re a single mom sure but so many have it much harder than you. Honestly sometimes I forget you’re a single mom because you just don’t seem like it. I know none of those things were said negatively. If anything I’m sure they were meant as a compliment. What everyone doesn’t see is the blood, sweat, and tears that goes into running a well-oiled machine that is a single parent family home. For me it looks like working 60 plus hours a week to be able to care for my family. It looks like cleaning and cooking just like any other household with kids. It looks like a long work day and busy evening playing, cooking, cleaning, and bonding with your kids. It also looks like handling emotional parenting setbacks and victories alone. While I have a tribe that loves and cares for us so incredibly much that doesn’t eliminate what is inevitably everyday life. Because I do have it so much better than others I sometimes feel like I can’t ask for help. Who am I to take support from those who don’t have the love in their life that I have? It’s a weird place I’ve found myself. I sometimes think I’m the least single momish of any single mom. But if that’s true why do I find myself so overwhelmed and quite honestly sad so often.

I guess I said all of that to say this. My message to any single parent is let yourself be yourself. If you have found yourself in a fortunate spot with love and support appreciate what you have. In addition to that don’t discount your struggles. You have the beautiful gift of parenting. It is hard and that’s okay. You can ask for help. Your emotions are valid and real. To those of you watching from the outside, try to understand. Not every story is created equal. However, every single parent story does have a common denominator. There is someone who has taken on a job meant for two all on their own. Maybe offer encouragement, take them out for coffee, ask how their day is (but dig a little deeper), place value on their story. To myself...be confident in yourself. Your story is unique. Your family is precious and you will get through this. Don't be afraid to be honest and real with people.

Finally, I leave you with this: single parents are ballers.

Tribe

YOU GUYS. So if anyone read my previous post you know all about my overwhelm struggle. It's been even harder because I've had no time to get the house in tip top shape so when I come home every day it's just not the restful environment I would love. This is a HUGE thing for me. 

This is when I talk about the importance of community. I'm a super introvert so I don't make a ton of friends very easily but I've learned over the years how important it is to have a community of friends that love and support each other. Being a young single mom I feel like it's been hard for me to find friends that I can completely relate to. Everyone is just in a different phase of life. Recently I've started to see that when friends are like family it doesn't matter what phase of life you're in you just love each other.

That's exactly what happened to me. I posted an honest and vulnerable piece of myself and my family came to the rescue. My sweet sister and friend Sophie spent hours upon hours cleaning my house to perfection today while I was at work. I had no idea until I walked in to see the beautiful, clean glory. 

...TEARS...

For real you guys. I cried. This huge piece of stress and blah was just lifted from me and given to others. Well really they lifted it and took it on themselves. What a huge blessings! Ah I can't event find the words now to describe how huge it is to me. My heart is so happy. Not just to have a clean house but to know people love me so dearly. 

Sophie and Jourdan, THANK YOU. A million times over thank you. For all of your hard work in my dirty house and for your sweet hearts so ready and willing to help a friend. I love you both. 

Find your tribe you guys. Love them hard. 

Much love

Olivia

overwhelm

Hi everyone! In the spirit of my new site I thought I'd add this little blog section. I'm the kind of person that is all about the pretty things. I love pretty photos, pretty atmospheres, pretty anything! I love when an event goes exactly as planned. I really enjoy seeing and sharing the happy moments. I've just realized that really all I share is the pretty stuff and I guess that's really what the world likes to share too. The only problem is that it generates this sort of comparison game when in reality we're comparing ourselves to a facade. So in the spirit of authenticity I thought I'd add a section to, what I think is a beautiful site, of the real life every day stuff.

My word for today...well my work for the week so far is overwhelm. You guys feeling me? I feel like I'm drowning in my life as of late. I'm not sure exactly of the cause but I can think of a few. This is where I start throwing a pity party for myself [insert confetti here].

I'm just so tired! I get up early every day to get ready before I have to get the kids up. I take them to my parents where they hang for the day. I'm at work by 7:30am. I work all day (at an amazing place) using my brain to it's full capacity which is great. Then I go home and work for two to three more hours styling to make extra income. Making enough money to support a family of three on my own feels nearly impossible. I also have (and love) to give all my energy that I have remaining to playing, caring for, and loving my sweet littles. By the time they're in bed I have to do what feels like a deep clean of my entire house. HOW DOES IT GET SO DIRTY SO FAST. I have laundry piled to the ceiling. Dishes in the sink. And lord knows what else going on in my house. After that I get to spend some very short quality time with my boyfriend before I crawl to my bed. I even feel gross! You know how you look like a drowning rat anytime you get your hair done? You know you don't look good in that freaking cape. I feel like that constantly! A short night's sleep and I start all over.

And scene.

Seriously guys sometimes the struggle is real. For me it is right now. Right now my life is not the pretty and fun stuff. It's not the macarons and peonies (they're not even in season anymore!). It's just life. Crazy, single mom life. To say I have all the answers of how I get through it would be a lie. Right now I'm taking it day by day. I don't really have the time to cry but I think I'm too tired to anyway. I know that we all have these seasons. I know that some are facing much worse than I am right now and I commend them for keeping their lives together.

How about we stay in this together? We all struggle. We've all been tired. What's the point of living life if you're not using your experiences and wisdom to help others? So I guess my challenge or thought is make your moments count. Make your words count. Be supportive of those who need support. Keep your eyes open and your heart in tune to see the tired and hurting people in your every day. And don't be afraid to ask for help.

Much love you guys

Olivia