Motherhood has broken my heart

I’m forever changed and always grateful for it. This is a growth opportunity, but one I didn’t see coming when I found out I was pregnant in September of 2018. See, I had lost my way. I was trying to pave my own path, only to be shown once again that my plan wasn’t written by me.

Once I became a mother, some things changed in my heart. One, I fell in love with my child. She was and still is my miracle baby. The baby that I was told would be very hard to have. The baby I will never take for granted after seeing so many others struggle through fertility and beyond. I can safely say I’ve never felt this type of love before and can’t imagine being able to replicate it ever again (unless there’s another child in my future). Two, I started feeling differently towards her father. This was the thing I didn’t see coming. I started imagining things differently from what was the harsh reality around me. I started dreaming and hoping. I fell in love with him. No, the idea of us working out. Of Aria having parents who loved each other and who could show her what love looks like.

I found myself yearning for the perfect family. The family that loved each other and loved others. The blended family that actually got along. The unusual story of it actually working out. My heart turned into a mother wanting to actually not be that stereotypical struggling single mom. My thought patterns changed and I started having massive anxiety. Sleepless nights, explosive moments, huge mood swings. I just wanted to have it all.

I got so wrapped up in my alternative reality that I didn’t see I was dying on the outside. Things weren’t working out. I was miserable, and I was trying to be someone I hated. Someone I didn’t recognize came out. I started drinking heavily, and using other coping mechanisms. It got so bad that the person I wanted so badly to want me was triggering memories of my ex husband and my failed marriage.

Thankfully, I was able to take a step back and make the healthiest decision. I chose to stop living in my fake world and finally wake up. I realized that being a struggling single mother isn’t half as bad as what I was doing to myself. And actually a lot healthier. Not just for me, but also for my daughter. She needs me to be happy and healthy, not destroying myself. She needs to see what wholesome, unconditional love is. Because she deserves it. And I deserve it. I am enough. I am purpose. I am love.

Resources for expectant mothers

After being the only expectant mother who showed up alone for the hospital tour, I realized that it would be beneficial to share resources for others going through the same or similar situation as me. This whole single parent thing isn’t easy, but these resources have helped me cope and prepare for what’s to come.

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Obama Care/Medicare

Without insurance, having a baby can easily cost at least 10k. And as a single mom, that can be detrimental. But insurance can also get pricey. Thankfully, there are programs out there that cut the cost for insurance. Don’t get me wrong, though. Those medical bills will still pile up, but at least they won’t amount to $10,000!

Aid for Women

I already wrote an entire post about this amazing resource in Chicago. If you’re not in Chicago, I would urge you to find something similar. I entered in free pregnancy test clinic near me in google to find this place.

Free Breast Pump

With insurance, a breast pump costs $0. And after doing some research and talking to some other mom’s, I found the best of the best breast pump to get. Medela pump is the way to go is what I found.

Community Support

I’ve found an amazing supportive community at my local church Free Church. I attend church services, small groups, and church events. I also am part of the host team which is basically the greeting team that welcomes newcomers to the church. Outside of church, I’m also a part of the wonderful running community in Oak Park. Whatever works for you, I would recommend finding some local group to support you. I have heard great things in regards to local mom groups as well that I plan on joining once baby is here.

Meditation

While finances are definitely tight, stress can easily increase. Getting your mind and spirit right is important. Your baby can feel what you feel. So having positive thoughts and a calm mind is ideal. I found a local Buddhist center where they welcome newcomers and drop ins on a weekly basis to sit in and learn meditation techniques and to meditate. My recommendation here is to find a place you feel welcomed and comfortable at. Doesn’t have to be associated with any religion if you’re not into that.

What resources have you used as a single parent?