This is the story of a single mom and her amazing daughter.
Who We Are:
I am Raven. I’m a 43-year-old mom of 1 wonderful daughter. I didn’t plan to be a mom. As a matter of fact, I’d made a very firm decision a few years ago when the ticking of the biological clock became loud enough to force me to pay attention, that I would not have children. I love kids and have always been actively involved with the kids in my family and circle of friends, but I was fine with not having any of my own. One major factor in that decision was that I was adamant that I did not want to be a single parent. Then she came along. She sneaked in when I wasn’t looking and took me completely by surprise. I was terrified at first. There were health issues, financial issues, holy-crap-I’m-having-a-child-on-my-own-at-42 issues to deal with. And there was absolute, sheer terror that I would not be a good mom.
Thanks to the best best friends anyone could ask for (including one who happens to be my sister) and their unwavering support, I pulled it together. I got up, dusted myself off, and said, “I can do this.” When it became very clear that my daughter’s father wanted nothing to do with her, I set out to be the best single mom in the history of the world. I was still scared of all the things that could go wrong, but I knew that I was going to be someone my child could count on no matter what life threw at us.
Now, almost 2 years after her entry into the world, I am so in love I often feel like my feet can’t touch the floor, I’m so uplifted. I don’t just love being A mom. I love being HER mom. My daughter is the most fabulous person I’ve ever met. I revel in seeing the kindness and compassion in her soul, the intelligence in her countenance, the mischief in her eyes. I cherish every moment of every day in her presence. I look forward to seeing the woman she will become, but for now…
She is Owl. She is 20 months old and on the run. She is strong, sweet, and loving. In new situations, she hangs back and takes in every detail before choosing when and how to interact with this new branch of her tree. She is full of love and compassion and kindness. She adores our pets and the people in her inner circle. She doesn’t let new people in easily. You have to gain her trust. Once she claims you as hers, though, you will never be the same. She is extremely energetic and loves to run around and dance. Everything she does is on her terms. She knows what she wants, when, how, and will insist on nothing less. She’s going to be a FABULOUS 2-year-old!
I’m a crunchy mom. I believe in full-term breastfeeding, co-sleeping, gentle parenting, natural life style, and getting dirty. I moved back to my home town late in my pregnancy to be close to my family, so Owl gets lots of time with her grandmother and aunt. We have an amazing community of friends who have all embraced Owl and been incredibly supportive of me during the pregnancy and since her birth. I live by the words of Ruth Hulburt Hamilton:
“The cleaning and scrubbing will wait till tomorrow,
For children grow up, as I’ve learned to my sorrow.
So quiet down, cobwebs. Dust go to sleep.
I’m rocking my baby and babies don’t keep.”
My hair is rarely brushed. The household tasks are done when they get done. I shower when I can. I decline invitations to any event that does not include my daughter and am perpetually late to those I do attend because of the toddler gauntlet between me and the door. I haven’t slept through the night since months before she was born and don’t expect to for months, if not years, to come.
And I love it. Becoming a mother after having done the going out with friends, the focusing on career above all else, the exploring and adventuring, and all the crazy finding my way stuff is a gift. If I had become a mother when I was younger, my child would have been an inconvenience. I had other things to do. Now that I’ve done all those things and lived all the experiences I’ve had, I can put everything else aside and be Mom first. Not only am I not the mom I would have been years ago, I’m not the mom I thought I’d be before my daughter was in my arms. I am constantly evolving based on Owl’s needs. For all my plans of how I would do certain things, handle certain situations and stages of development, Owl has her own plans and makes them clear to me. I love stepping back and letting her lead the way. She makes me a better parent every day.
I am constantly amazed by who Owl is and who she is becoming. I am so honored that she has chosen me to hold her hand and walk beside her in this life. As my daughter grows, I grow with her–as a person and as a mother. This is our story.
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