The difficulty in being a divorced single mother is the absent sense of belonging that many of us feel. Most women who long to become mothers spend time building a life/foundation to add a child to and become part of a unit. As a young woman I had built my own foundation and identity as a person, then as a partner, and then as a wife, before I became a mother. Then divorce became a factor. Once the foundation of my union and that identity I had as a wife was wiped out from under me, my instinct became an urgency to rebuild, reclaim and reestablish my foundation; much like the instinct of an insect to rebuild its home after it's stepped on or rained out.
The trouble in a new foundation is that the process is no longer allowed to happen in the natural order of our society. Two (or more, depending on the number of children) parts of the unit remain, but without the solid ground of a foundation to rest on they may become scavengers; searching for a new identity wherever they see potential. The first issue in this search is the uncharted territory; the unfamiliar process of reconstruction and the need for instant gratification in it. Since we preexist as a "family", our brains tell us that we have done our due diligence. That earlier process of building and becoming the original unit has already taken place and it feels as if we should be allowed to skip steps 1, 2 & 3...etc. Of course that natural way of thinking couldn't be further from the truth, because instead of building a foundation in free form, fully customizable and dependent upon circumstances which are largely of our choosing, we are now attempting to construct a foundation that will fit perfectly beneath the partial structure that remains. Extremely difficult, though not impossible, construction of a stable foundation must be done with great care and concern. Though I suppose there are instances where carelessness can lead to stability (largely by chance), such behavior is not in my nature.
Lately I feel a greater need for a foundation; an overwhelming need to belong somewhere. As it penetrates my heart and overwhelms my spirit, I can't help but wonder if my son has some form of this longing himself. He's 5 years old, and his foundation with his father is as non-existent as mine. He has not seen, spoken to, or had communication of any kind with his dad in almost 2 years, though we often have short conversations about him, or I overhear him having them with other people. This train of thought only leads me further into that longing for stability, as my heart aches not only for myself, but for my child and his innocent role in it.
I am not saying that I would go back and fight for my marriage. It was not worth salvaging in any way, and as time has gone on, I see with more and more clarity that my former spouse was never a stable foundation, nor would he have had the ability to become one as time went on. Some men are incapable of being the husbands and fathers that they've carelessly committed to being. Finding this out only AFTER having become a wife and mother is a tragedy of monumental proportions that will ripple out and effect my household for the rest of my life, and into future generations. However, I believe that the messes we create for ourselves always serve a greater purpose, and obviously in this case the greatest purpose of my life; my sweet little boy, who I wouldn't trade for all the fresh starts that a billion years could offer.
With that said, I began writing this to express my deep seeded longing for a place to call my own, but also to make sure that people in my life understand the complexity of the situation I am facing. I have difficulty sometimes in communicating my thoughts and desires to friends and family who are making their best attempts to "fix" me. While I won't deny that I have been broken, these "fixes" are temporary and are rather labeled at "fix-ups". Many times, especially in the last few months, I have been approached by different friends about my romantic life. People often ask me why I'm not with this person or that person, or they want to introduce me to someone. It has become difficult for me to explain my reservations to others. People just don't get it, and that's fine. I could never expect someone who hasn't stood in my shoes to understand the trouble in stepping forward in them. There's not much else for me to say. I know that there are women who will read this and know EXACTLY what I mean, and at the same time there will be women who might read this and think, "This female is crazy." and they're right, but I know I'm onto something.
To those who have recently stepped into shoes much like mine, I'm right here with ya.
To those women who stood firm in my shoes for quite some time until God led them forward, I admire you.
Until I am blessed with the opportunity to build a lasting, stable foundation, I will continue to rest in the arms of the one who founded ME.
Always remember to feed your Faith...and your doubts will starve to death.
Much love, Momma's.