I am a single mother. I do not receive a dime of support financially from anyone. Layken’s father made the decision to take himself out of Layken’s present and future to be. I am well aware that I can take him to court and rail him with child support but that is much easier said than done.
My priority is Layken. His happiness and well-being comes first above all else. I don’t’ have the time to read a book let alone go to court and tolerate the headache of communicating, or lack thereof, with Layken’s father. I am the sole provider for my son. I am his lifeline, as he is mine.
To provide for my son, I work 7 days a week at 2 jobs. I am going back to South to finish my degree. Needless to say the least, I am struggling day in and day out. The feeling of helplessness is overwhelming at times but each night when I gaze upon the face of my innocent son who never asked to be in this situation, I find my strength.
I once questioned God on a daily basis. Why am I suffering to provide for my son? Why does the single mom who goes out every weekend without her child receive child support? Why doe that single mom have people who willingly watch their children at every whim? Why do the single mom’s who take more pictures of themselves than pictures of their children have an amazing boyfriend who cares and loves for not only her but her children as well? What am I doing wrong God?!?
Anger, self pity, sadness, apprehension, doubt are a few words that describe how I once felt. Ever so often I catch myself having those feelings but I quickly think of all the things I have to be thankful for. I won’t sugar coat it, difficult is the understatement of what my struggles have been. However, I overcame each one and I continue to rise up. From working hard, I have been able to provide Layken with a home of our own. A home that I am proud to call ours. It may not be extravagant and luxurious, but as soon as I drive up and see it, my heart is filled with love for it because I worked hard for it.
More often than most, people have asked me to reconcile with Layken’s father so I don’t have to struggle each day. I look at them puzzled and ask them why I should succumb? Although I have thought about it myself once before, his actions have proved to me what I knew all along and if I were to relinquish my dignity and integrity to get back together with him, it would be the biggest mistake in my life.
I have people who question why I work 2 jobs and why I continue to struggle rather than get back with Layken’s father. They may not approve of me working everyday, but they are also not supporting Layken. I’m aware that I could take the easy road but I refuse to submit to anyone. I’ve been given that opportunity many times and I know it wouldn’t be hard to have the same opportunity if I were to seek one out. However after overcoming all the struggles and finding my strength, I have come to the realization that I enjoy my independence and my time with Layken far too much to be contained by anyone. I was once told that I look like an adolescent but as soon as I began speaking, they know I’m much older because “no 18 year old has an attitude like that”. I am strong willed and hard headed as it comes. I cannot and will not be contained by anyone.
The other day Layken and I were walking in our neighborhood. When we came to the street crossing, I told him to hold my hand. Without questioning me, he placed his hand in mine and tightly squeezed my hand as I led him across the street to the other side safely. I began to wonder to myself, how did he know I would lead him across the street to safety? Because he trusts me. Children are not born with doubt and apprehension. So why was I doubting my savior?
God’s love has never failed me and it never will. Whatever your belief is when storms get rough, what is the thing EVERYONE does first? Pray. When I pray, I feel comfort. I feel strength. I feel peace. I ask God for forgiveness. My faith is restored and stronger than ever. God’s love endures all and will surpass all struggles. And just like the song Layken often sings at the top of his lungs, “My God is so BIG. So strong and so mighty, there is nothing my God cannot do for you!”
Many people have been taken aback when they hear my struggles. They always say, “I wouldn’t have ever guessed that. You’re always smiling and so happy. My response is that I simply have no reason not to smile. Although each day is difficult, God woke me and Layken up. And that alone is enough reason to smile.
So I place my hand in God’s and I tightly squeeze and follow Him where He leads me because I trust Him. I know He will lead me to safety. After all, God only gives his strongest soldiers the toughest battles.
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- Dylann Roof pleaded not guilty to federal hate crime charges in the Charleston church massacre.