My friend Sharron Carrns shares with us about her experience of being single again as a young mother.
Being single was not part of my plan. But life does not always work out according to plan. When I got married I thought it would be “’til death do us part.” Instead, the five years following my divorce often felt like death. Death of dreams I had for marriage. Death of my desire to raise my daughter in a home with one mom and one dad – the family I had not known as a child of a broken home. Death of taking a break from my career to be a mom at home with my daughter when she was small.
At first I was surviving. Some days were lighter on my heart, now that the burden of a messed up marriage no longer weighed on me. Other days I worked or slept away the hours of pain and loneliness.
A few months into my single years I decided I needed to really live again. My faith was integral to that decision. I wish I could say I completely depended on God and spent all of my days in trust and peace. Instead, there were rocky days and smooth days. There were falling down and getting back up again days. Sadly, there were days of straying away from God’s standards and recommitting to them soon after. One thing I know for sure is that He never left me, and He provided for me while I was facing the joys and sorrows of singleness. His presence became very real to me. His provision became real, too, often though the actions of others.
Some of the ways He and others helped me were:
- Single friends for companionship.
- Married friends who did not turn their back on me because the divorce made them feel uncomfortable.
- Christian friends who loved me and did not judge me.
- A couple of men at work ensured my car was repaired without me being ripping me off as a single woman who didn’t know better.
- A salesman sold me a lemon he knew needed a new engine, and an honest dealer went after the dealer and got the engine repair covered.
- I worked with a man whose wife was a police officer. They lived down the street, and I learned they would drive by my house and watch to make sure we were alright.
- A girlfriend from work brought me medicine when my daughter and I were sick and I could not go out. Another brought my daughter a gift bag with things to do while she had the chicken pox.
- My company had tuition reimbursement, and I finished my degree during those years and was able to grow with the company.
- A local appliance store discovered I could not afford to pay for a refrigerator and allowed me to make payments on a used one so I no longer had to keep my food on the frozen back porch.
- A Christian therapist helped me begin to heal from the pain of my marriage, divorce, the results of the fear-based church I attended as a child, and the damaging events of my childhood. He helped me learn to face the fears of being alone, worrying my little girl might like my husband’s new girlfriend and not need or want me, or that life would never have promise again.
- Friends gave me hugs. Single people are often feeling starkly alone without human touch.
If you know someone who is single, whether they chose it or not, you can show that person the love of Christ in the tangible and intangible ways others showed His love to me. Twenty-five years later (Twenty of them happily married to my husband) I still remember every incidence.
Sharron Carrns spent five years single but not alone. God was with her every step of the way. Her life became increasingly full of joy as she grew in her faith, married her best friend and added two more children and two God-children to her family. She writes and speaks about growing and co-founded the non-profit “Second Calling…Not Done Yet” for women in the second season of life.
- Write down the names of singles in your community.
Pray they would have companionship from other singles and married families.
Pray they would know God’s presence in the midst of their joys and sorrows.
- Ask God to show you how you can practically support and encourage them.
Tweetables:Being single was not part of my plan. A story from a single mother of how we can #pray #PrayAtoZ
A few months into my single years I decided I needed to really live again. #PrayAtoZ
Practical ways to support and encourage singles. #PrayAtoZ