1) Find another single mom and trade out a morning or few hours of kid time so you both get a break. You agree to take her kids for a morning and then she returns the favor. Some communities have a mother’s day out program as well.
2) Put a child who is at least 10 years old in charge for 10 minutes. Tell your kids you are going to your bedroom and lock the door. Unless someone is hurt, you are taking a short time out.
3) Get up 30 minutes before the kids. Take the alone time to enjoy a nice shower, read, think, or pray over a cup of coffee.
4) Get the kids to bed by 8:30 p.m. Older children can read quietly in their rooms for 30 minutes, but lights out for the younger ones. Start the bedtime routine at 7:30, so they are in bed by 8:00 p.m. Then spend time with the older one. This way you’ll have a few hours to yourself at night.
5) Get the kids to help with small chores and picking up. Stay on top of cleaning, meals, and school activities. Just don’t strive for perfection.
6) Take care of your body by eating well. You cannot allow yourself to be run down from lack of sleep or bad eating habits. Remember there is a woman’s body hiding under mom. It needs attention.
7) View life as a challenge. Every stressful event is an opportunity for your family to meet the challenge and solve the problem.
8) Practice relaxation techniques throughout the day. While your sitting at the table feeding kids, do deep breathing, or tense and relax muscles to keep your physical body calm.
9) Run Bible verses through your head and teach them to the kids. Choose ones about God’s provisions and help.
10) Make sure you have support – people who will pray for you, help you in the time of crisis, and lend a hand once in awhile. Check your church to see if it offers any special helps for single moms. My church has a program called “Adopt a Single Mom.” Start one in your church. Get involved with other moms and share tips and information.
Above all, keep your relationship with God strong so that you don’t give in to defeat or discouragement. It’s easy to feel overwhelmed when you are one parent doing the job of two. But, He gives you the grace to do it!