How To Embrace The Clusterf*ck That Is Single Momhood

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single mom

In order to embrace MY clusterfuck, I live life between two worlds.

By Tessonja

We all know life isn't always unicorns and rainbows. We all have good days as well as bad.

There are days when my life seems so perfect that I wouldn't trade it for any other. And by perfect, I mean a clusterfuck; faults, flaws, and hurts included in with all the smiles and fun. There are times when I absolutely adore this clusterfuck of motherhood, work, creativity, and adventure.

Then there are moments when I look at the clusterfuck and realize this was NEVER how I'd imagined my life would be. This wasn't what I wanted. I see people living the lives I thought I'd be living, and suddenly my perfect little life looks more like a pile of toppled bricks.

Comparison truly is the thief of joy.

I never wanted to be a single mother. I never wanted to raise a child from a "broken home." I'd grown up fearing divorce and the prospect of ever being a single mother.

When I thought about having kids, I imagined I would only do so if I could provide my future family with the one thing I'd always wanted for myself; one of those perfect, whole-unit families with money and privilege and a three-story house with a maid. When I thought about NOT having kids, I imagined it would be a fun-filled life of drinking, travel, adventure, laughter, and romance.

Then life happened and I learned shit isn't always black and white, either/or. Sometimes you get a mixed bag of things you weren't really prepared for or expecting.

Let me say that I absolutely do NOT regret being a mom. My daughter is awesome and I love her to eternity. It's just strange sometimes to realize that this isn't the life I'd planned.

Some things in life you just absolutely cannot get back. Life keeps going forward, and there are only two choices.

  1. You can stay stuck and continue to mourn what you lost, envy those who seemingly have what you want, and feel sorry for your shitty life. Or,
  2. You can embrace the clusterfuck and learn to love it. And keep loving it, even when envy and self-pity threaten to steal your joy.

Embracing the clusterfuck really is your only option, unless you want to be the kind of depressed, whiny douche no one wants to hang out with. Figuring out HOW to embrace it is the hard part.

In order to embrace MY clusterfuck, I live life between two worlds. Half my life is spent in the wholesome world of motherhood: playdates, mommy-daughter dates, arts and crafts, parks, beaches, picnics, crayons, paint, snacks, healthy meals.

The other portion of my life is spent finding enjoyment as a young unmarried: getting day drunk with my friends, going out on my weekend nights, dance parties, playing music, swearing like a sailor, dressing like a high-class prostitute, wine, beer, tequila, vodka, laughter, inappropriate conversations.

It's a strange dance to balance these two worlds. It's hard not to feel out of place sometimes. I don't fit in with the wholesome, married moms, but I also don't fit in entirely with the young unmarrieds. I don't get to talk about my husband's fancy job and my stupid new car and how nice it is to go for a run alone every day after my busy afternoon staying home with the kids. I also don't get to go out every weekend night getting shit-faced with my friends and sleeping away a hangover until noon. One foot in one world. One foot in the other.

I have to embrace it.

This may not be the life I chose, but it's the life I have. Most of the time I have no idea where my life is going. But I guess that's okay. Giving zero fucks is a pretty good place to be.

And if I really want to embrace what I have, I can think of it like this: I may not have ONE of the two lives I'd imagined (a wholesome family vs. an exciting social life); instead I have some of the best pieces of both. I'm an awesome mom and I'm providing my daughter with a really fun, creative, loving environment. I'm also having a shit ton of fun with the other half of my life.

What can you do to embrace the clusterfuck? What can you add to your life to make it closer to the life you want?

I wish I could tell you how, but I can't. Your life is your own journey and you have to figure it out yourself. I ain't some self-help guru. I'm a fuck-up just like you, and all I can do is share my story.

Embrace the clusterfuck. It's worth it.

This article was originally published at BlogHer. Reprinted with permission from the author.