Me, a single mother

It will soon be 11 years since I was unexpectedly left alone with a ten-month-old child in my arms.

If I could, I would rewrite my story as a single mum. I would say to my young version: first of all, learn to know yourself and then learn to take care of yourself. To really take care of yourself, taking into account what you need most. And by taking care of yourself, your self-esteem will improve, you’ll feel stronger and less alone. Don’t try to compensate for something you think your son should have in order to be happy, like siblings, a father who is close or a big house. You don’t have to be mum and dad. You are already you and you are quite an extraordinary human being. Let your child grow up in the truth, don’t act as a bridge, let him create his own relationships, let him know his own story. Don’t try to be perfect, let him know that you’re tired today because, yes, you’re the one who takes care of him, takes him to school, takes care of the house, the food, every day – seven days a week, thirty days a month – and you still have a job. When he’s older, you can even say: today I really needed to be alone, without you.

If I could, I’d say to my young version: hang in there, just a little longer.

One day your child will grow up, you’ll have a healthy, pleasant and close relationship. One day you’ll find a place where you feel at home, friends who understand and appreciate you and, perhaps, even that unique love you’ve been looking for all your life, someone who will see you and love you for who you are, someone with whom you’ll learn, grow and build a story, someone with whom you’ll finally be happy.

To all single mothers around the world, I wish I could say: I know it is tough, there were so many days where I felt alone, lost, tired and even desperate. I was lucky, too, in many ways – there is always something to be grateful for, I believe. But what has really made a change in my life with my son was undertaking my self-development journey. That alone, changed our life dramatically for the better.