I had fought relentlessly for this day to arrive. I had worked hard to see it through. With duct-tape, band-aids, a bulletproof vest and little one in tow, I made my way through college. And I wasn’t going to let anything get in my way of graduating in the next month until I hit what seemed like a steel wall.
How was I going to wrap up this last quarter of college when I couldn’t type my papers and do the research from home. Cause who wants to take their 5-year-old to the library? How was I going to pay rent with no money? How was I going to maintain a clear mind to do all that is required to participate in life AND provide love and care to a 5-year-old little girl who just needed her momma? Too many things were falling apart and I wasn’t able to fix them all.
I wasn’t enough.
I’m sure this scenario and much worse takes you to your own journey and can make a momma want to run for the hills.
In last week’s blog post, I walked you through “10 Triggers That are Sure to Make Any Single Mom Go Mad.”
Just to review, the ten triggers mentioned were:
- Handling the aftermath of divorce
- Dealing with dreaded court documents, dates and outcomes
- Child support
- Money matters
- Too much to do in very little time
- Doing it all alone
- No job or little education
- Circumstances surrounding the care of special needs children
- Raising kids. Period.
Before I talk about responding to these problems, I would like to ask you a few questions:
Do you know what it is you are fighting for and why? Are you fighting the necessary battle for the current season you are in or do you need to shift gears? What tools are you using and do you need to tweak them? Lastly, are you asking yourself the right questions through the mess?
Take these questions into consideration as you are going through the list of options below to help you work through your stressors.
- Separate Your Fears from the Truth: This is a simple exercise to begin to identify the fears that may be driving some of your choices or preventing you from making a decision. Fear/Doubt vs. Faith/Believing or hoping for better. Write out your fear(s). Re-write the truth. Walk them out.
- Let Go of Control: There is a difference between doing the right thing and fighting for it and wanting to control factors. Control is usually driven by fear, doubt, and worry. If you find yourself trying to control too many outcomes in your day(s) ask yourself why.
- Prioritize the Problems: Don’t tackle them all at once. More than likely there just isn’t enough of you to go round. So what needs to be addressed first? What is the bleeding elephant in the room? That would be the red elephant. Not pink 😉
- Take Action: A very wise women I have admired for many years gave me insurmountable wisdom when she told me weekly, the best antidote for worry is action. Don’t take a backseat to the one life you have been blessed with. Get busy. Taking action.
- Trust Your Momma Instincts: Sometimes we need to be redirected, and sometimes we know exactly what we need to do even if no one else understands. This is your family. You have been entrusted with these precious little creatures, and you have it in you to do it. Trust your gut. Let that protective instinct drive you. It usually comes BEFORE the fear and doubt. Go with it FIRST.
- Dig Deep: Managing a home, caring for a family and maintaining a healthy mindset in between takes work. More often than not, too much of the surface stuff gets done, and the heart of the family gets pushed to the side. For later. Single momma’s gotta dig deep. You won’t get what you need by scratching the surface of life.
- Make the Tough Decision: When we break the problem(s) down piece by piece the solution can be more painful than the problem but make it anyway. And find a way to get through it.
- Lose the Losers: Ain’t no one ever got anywhere and accomplished much hanging with the broke and broken. Find new friends.
- Bring in the Troops: Find ’em. Go get ’em. Don’t do it alone. I don’t mean boyfriend or another deadbeat dad or a good man to just simply solve your problems. I am talking family, friends, babysitter, parenting coach, church. Whatever it takes.
I saved #10 for last. Because it is #10 that saved my life and usually it was #10 that I went for last.
But it is #10 that gave me the wisdom and strength to process each of my personal triggers and apply a solution.
#10 for me is..
At the top of this post I said, “I wasn’t enough”. I still believe that. Although my God met me just where I was in the middle of all my messes, I was not enough.
At the end of my trying to control each slice of the pie, when my plate was so full I was verbally vomiting all over my family and friends, I would finally take it to Him. In His unconditional love for me, He did not solve my problems. He gave me his infinite wisdom that allowed me to navigate the process of moving beyond divorced at 24. He gave me the strength to grow beyond welfare to a bachelor’s degree and a career, and from raising one beautiful toddler to raising a beautiful young woman.
But most of all and above all these physical factors, like finances, careers, and titles, He moved my broken and wounded spirit to one that is restored. Allowing me the opportunity to not just change my life but to help others to change theirs. Oh ya, he also gave me a wonderful husband AND another beautiful baby girl.
Looking back He gave me a perfect storm that showed me I absolutely could have never known him had I not known pain.
I would have never appreciated the sunny days had I not gone through the rainy ones. And I would have never appreciated good and pure love had I not known the rejection and hate of others.
Now, after delivering this straight to your front door, let me ask you this: from the list above what stings you the most? Letting go of control? Losing the losers? Making the tough decision(s)? God? The one that stings the most might be the one you go for. Then the next one and the next one…
That is digging deep.
Like I used to tell all the students that were having a hard time taking that next step to change their life, I will also tell you. Life moves forward. The clock doesn’t stop. The years come and go. Where will you be? Who will you be? What will your family look like at the end of it all?
Take away: what is on your plate and stressin’ you out the most? What other great responses are there besides the ones I mentioned? What are you doing to get through and rise above your triggers?
**If you need further help and what I tossed out isn’t enough for you due to the overwhelming season you are in don’t hesitate to contact me. We can set up a free 30-minute consultation to discuss a specific plan to meet your needs.