Looking back, I find it hard to believe that I’ve been a widowed, single, homeschooling mom for almost 17 years. Only by the grace of God.
My husband, Don, was killed in a car accident when our second child was just 7 weeks old. I remember trying to wrap my mind around the fact that I was 25, the mother of two, and widowed. Not possible, I thought. But with a busy toddler and a newborn demanding my care, and a wonderful supportive church, I began doing the only thing I could—putting one foot in front of another and walking the path God had placed me on.
It had always been Don’s and my desire to home educate our children. So I began right away. When the younger, Timothy, was down for naps, I would play letter games with my toddler, Amanda... . She began reading at 3, Timothy by age 4. But homeschooling was still hard. Even though God provided all we needed (I was able to stay home for the first 10 years and have managed on part-time jobs since then), emotionally, it was still often draining.
I could not even begin to guess at the number of days I cried, exhausted. Or, the number of days I prayed, “God, you’re their Father. Do something!” Many days I thought that I would have to give up, that I could not do a good enough job... . I did not know any other single-parent homeschoolers. I thought I was the only one crazy enough to attempt it.
But the rewards of His faithfulness! Both my children are walking with the Lord. Having been sheltered during those formative years and shown “a more excellent way” by a loving church family, they are not struggling with the immaturity and poor choices so many other children from single-parent homes struggle with.
This year will be my last year as a homeschooling mother. Surprisingly, it is proving to be the most difficult one, both financially and emotionally. Often (daily?) I cry, often I beg women at the church to pray for me, and often I sense my faithful God reminding me that He is the same yesterday, today, and forever.
My fellow single moms, if I could tell you one thing, I would say this: It’s okay to cry. It’s even okay to cry in front of your children. Psalm 56:3 says, “When I am afraid I will trust in You.” Hard times will happen. But God is “able to do far more abundantly beyond all that we ask or think.” In Him is victory!