Three years ago I couldn't conceive of becoming a mother, let alone a single mom. I was the girl who believed in fairytales. You meet a man and fall madly in love, he sweeps you off your feet, you get married, and then here comes baby; at least that's how it happens in the movies.
Well, that didn't happen. In fact, things were such a blur that I found myself single, trying to figure out what just happened. The first thing that came to mind was, "whose going to love me with a child that's not their own." I'm not one of those "I don't need a man, I'll do for me and mines types." Y’all can keep that. I believe in love and above all intimacy. Having a companion is important to me; a friend to talk to and tell my inner most thoughts. While your child is sleeping and you're up all alone, having someone to comfort you doesn't seem like such a bad idea.
As a woman, I felt like I was undateable. Men have it so easy. There are plenty of women who are open to dating a man with a child, or at least in my opinion more open than men dating a single mom. Either way, getting back into the dating world was strange for me; it was a foreign concept. I wasn't even sure how I should dress anymore. What was too sexy, or worse "mom-like"? Everything was texted, dates were random with the expectation you were always ready to roll, and for some it was all about the turn-up. I think my first experiences dating were novelty, like getting my feet wet; I was testing the waters before fully jumping in. I quickly found that there are two types of men: some who can, and some who can't. The men who can't want a woman to jump through hoops and make dates last minute knowing damn well you don't have a sitter. They try to separate you from your duties as a mother with their selfish agendas, not understanding time, empathy and pre-planning is all you need. On the flip side, the men who can try their best to be accommodating, they listen to your needs, and are open to change.
I made it a point to not shut myself off from love. I understood bad experiences are just that...an experience. I understand that communication, trust, and openness are key for a relationships survival and growth potential. Personally, I feel you date how you feel on the inside. When I wasn't really sure of myself, I would date boys who were as equally unsure, which only added stress to my life. I highly suggest dating yourself before adding another person into your life. You don't want to be like an ameba trying to find another person to attach to and conform; you must first heal yourself. After some serious self-care, I knew I could only have a man who was in the same space I was in emotionally, mentally and spiritually, and was open to love and be loved. Don't deny yourself happiness because you think your time is devoted only to your child. While they are the most important people in your life, you are still a soul having a human experience. We all need love. There's no perfect plan to understand working through dating as a single parent than to just do it. For now, this story has a happy ending. I'm in a beautiful relationship, with a wonderful man.