- Family and Parenting
How to Learn to Be Both Mother and Father to a Son When You Are Widowed
Well here I go. I'm not sure if there is anyone out there that can relate, but I just wanted to let you know, I made it! My son has grown into a very productive member of society, in spite of the many mistakes I made along the way. Let me start at the beginning. I did everything just like I was suppose to. I graduated high school. I graduated college. I married my high school sweetheart. We bought a house and waited four years to have our son. We did everything according to social standards.
Then on the worst day of my life, tragedy struck. I worked at a local newspaper when the news came to me. My love and the father of my son was dead. I didn't know what in the world I was going to do, so I did all I could. I went home to my Mommy so she could fix it. I saw my Dad cry one time in his life and this was the time. The man of steal couldn't fix this. He couldn't snap his fingers and make this all better. My love died on May 2, 1997 and my son was to be one on May 31, 1997.
It's funny the kinds of things you think about when you can't actually think. If anyone of you knows anything about The Boy Scouts, then you will know what I'm talking about here, the pinewood derby cars. All I could think about was that I knew nothing about building a pinewood derby car. Your mind is a funny thing isn't it? My Dad assured me there was enough help to get that done, so I calmed down a bit.
The first few days were a blur. I am a "fixer" I fix things and this was a project for me. I had to plan the funeral and host guest, which in my opinion is a horrible custom for looky-loos. If you are not familiar with that term it is a person who just comes around to see what they can see. My Mother gave me the strength to do what needed to be done and I made it through. On the Thursday after the Monday of the funeral I went home. I knew I had to keep moving. I had to start this new life with no idea how and really no desire to do so.
I wasn't afraid because I didn't have enough sense to be scared. My parents were there to help me with my son because I had to go to work. Yes, I had to go to work. I have heard many times how lucky I was to have my house paid off when he passed away, but trust me that wasn't the case. We were young when we bought the house so we didn't get the insurance they offered because we thought no one dies at 42.
If you get nothing from this, get this never think it can't or won't happen to you. Get insurance to protect yourself so you will never been the position I was in. There is a little social security check you can receive when something like this happens but believe me it's very little. I made it though and so can you. You may have to work jobs you don't like and be away from your child when you should really be there but you can make it.
I was so fortunate to have a job less than five minutes from my house. I worked all morning shifts so my day started very early but it ended before school let out. My boss was a great man and anytime I needed to leave I got to leave. To pick him up if he was sick or school let out early, I took him to Mom and off I went back to work. I loved my job because it allowed me to be a mother. It wasn't what I had envisioned myself doing, but it was a job and I was thankful for it. So first and foremost I put my son's needs above my own. I knew he needed me not a big pay check.
So, this is how I made it through the basics of life. I worked and I came home to my child. My Mother never watched my son for me to go out. She felt that if I was working that was fine but if I was not I was to be with my son. One doesn't get a life if you have a child that child is your life. I am thankful for that as well because I'm sure that kept me out of a lot of trouble. Believe me I didn't need any help finding trouble, it found me, but that is something for another day.