I have had several people in the last couple of days ask:
1) Are you and Bobby okay?
2) Have you never told Bobby no before now?
The answers are simple:
The background for the posts about boundaries and being the unpopular Mom is simple. I'm reading a book called "My Single Mom Life" by Angela Thomas. The chapter I was referring to in my Facebook posts is called “Boundary Mom.” Angela tells why she sets them for her four children and why it is so important for us to set them for our children - especially single moms (single dads too).
Angela is a single mom because of divorce raising her children on her own. She was devastated by the divorce. She had nothing afterwards – no home, no furniture, no income, no job prospects, nothing! She tells of her struggles and shares some lessons from her experiences.
I have never considered myself as a single mom because my personal definition is an unmarried mother, either by divorce or never married. I don’t fit that definition. I’m a widow – I’m raising my son on my own because his father, my husband, died. It’s that simple. Angela gave me a different perspective to the definition of a single mother. Although, I confess, I still don’t call myself that.
Tuesday morning, I was working at the other funeral home where there is no computer – which means it’s just me and my little brain and some much needed reading time. I didn’t even bring my crochet with me! I was reading that chapter and felt very convicted to share with other moms. The first post said:
Some words to live by: Being the parent who sets boundaries for your kids usually takes you out of the running for Most Popular Mom! But you know what? I wasn't given this child to make me popular! God gave me this child to raise him to be a strong Christian man and I will do that with every fiber in my body! #mysinglemomlife
It was simply a reminder to myself and to all the moms out there that we must remember to keep those boundaries for our children because they are children and don’t have the knowledge that we have as adults.
It was also a reminder to myself and to all the moms out there that God gave us these children and we must do the best we can with them so that their lives will flourish for the glory of the Lord.
After listening to Patty speak today at Ronny’s Life Celebration, I was again reminded how important it is to keep the path I’m on. She stood up and bragged on her children and told them how proud they make their dad! Someday, I want Bobby to see Jesus and hear the words “Well done, my good and faithful servant.” That is my job!
Proverbs 22:6 - Start children off on the way they should go, and even when they are old they will not turn from it.
If we don’t take the responsibility of our children, who will? Do you really want to leave that up to TV, the internet, and their peers? Personally speaking, I’m not leaving it up to anyone else because, like I said before, God gave him to me and his father!
The second post said:
Yep! I did it again! I'm definitely losing the popularity contest! I just said no to two things in the time span of two minutes! I just got the feeling that it wasn't right for my child so I said no. I'm learning to go with my gut feelings because I believe that is the Holy Spirit working in me! #mysinglemomlife
That was only an example of how I’m learning to say “no” when something just doesn’t feel right. It wasn’t anything that big – just a couple of apps for his iPod. One of them was simply no because the name just didn’t sound good. It had nothing to do with the cost because my decision would still be no even if they had both been free. The decision was also based on the fact that he already spends way too much time on the iPod to begin with and I had no desire to contribute to his slight obsession. At nine years old, these are big decisions in his mind but for me at almost forty-four, the decisions I make today will mold him in the future. Therefore, I must be diligent and thoughtful in my decisions.
One last thought on saying ‘no’ to our children, it is always easier to come back later after thinking and even researching those decisions and say ‘yes.’ I explained that to Bobby because it’s important for him to know that I can be wrong and later change my mind. It is a way of showing him that I can make mistakes and I will apologize and will do my best to make it correct.
That night, Bobby went to bed mad (he was sure to tell me). I however didn’t change my attitude which probably angered him a tad more. I told him that I try not to let other people’s moods affect my moods. I still love you and I will do my best to protect you in whatever way I feel God has led me to. We said our prayers, I kissed him goodnight in the same way I always have every night and I left his room in the same way I always have because that is another boundary for him. (I will share that boundary another day)
When you see a post on my Facebook with the hashtag #mysinglemomlife, you will know that it is in reference to this powerful book!