This is Jen from grace, for single parents where your parenting and God’s grace collide. Today on the show I have Theresa Wilson and I’m excited to have her on today to talk to us about what makes a successful single mom. So welcome Theresa. I’m excited to have you on today. Theresa, can you just tell us a little bit about yourself and who you are and introduce yourself?
My name is Theresa from Tallahassee, Florida. I am a single mom of an 18 year old who has went off to college and everything, and I am a freelancer. So I do some work from home and I also work outside of the home and I sing, I act, I’m a voiceover artist and I also am a above all things, a Christian and a person who loves God and would really like to encourage single moms that they are not in this battle alone. Sometimes, you know, being a single mom can be challenging. It also can be rewarding, but it also can be challenging because with being a single parent there’s ages in their stages for the mom, as well as the child. So we have to work together to get through that.
So I just wanted to hear a little bit about your story and how you went from you know, starting out as a single mom and then to everything that you’ve accomplished now, because the journey can be hard and long. And I think you have a lot of encouragement to bring.
Yes. I started out as a single mom when my daughter was about 11 years old. So it’s about eight years where I’ve been a single parent. It started when I did have to go through a divorce. That wasn’t, it wasn’t a pretty picture, but I had to make choices. So I came from became a single mom because I felt like it was the best decision for me and my child. It’s just been a, it’s been a long journey, but as I say, it has been challenging as well as rewarding. So at this point, I am just looking back on the journey and moving along from here, you know success doesn’t come overnight. It’s thing that has to be worked at is something that you have to overcome a lot of obstacles. You have to realize that you’re never alone because you do have God there too, that you can trust to keep going through the journey. And the way you become successful is to continue to trust God. I couldn’t continue to move past those obstacles.
What did you feel like was the hardest part for you throughout that and being a single mom?
The hardest part is just going through transition and having to step out into the unknown to have to step out on and to a world where you don’t know, you don’t know what’s on the other side of those doors. You don’t know what the transition will be like because in any transition is going to be kind of shaky. The ground is kind of going to be shaky under you. However knowing you, you just have to know that you are going to make it through no matter what transition you would have to go through. The hardest part is having to trust God in the midst of the transition.
That was the toughest thing for me, because you, you really are trusting him with everything, what your child is making. The hardest thing is making a transition with children. And that was really the hardest part, just having to trust God and knowing that no matter what we go through, we have each other and that we can trust God to make sure that we come out okay on the other side.
And then on the flip side, what do you think was the best thing, or is the best thing about being a single parent?
The best thing is about being a single parent is the fact that it’s more free.It feels like it’s more about you and your child is more freeing. It’s more is something that you can look back on and smile. You can laugh, you can cry because it’s, if those moments, you know, it’s those moments when your child leaves home, you want to share your tears. It’s those moments when your child does, does make a funny face and you remember that face from your childhood. So you, it makes you laugh. It’s those times where you guys share on the, on the couch and you’re telling jokes or watching a movie, you know?
That’s the best part of being a parent is it’s the laughter and the tears, because through all, through the laughter and the tears, you it’s, it’s, it’s the best feeling in the world to be a parent.
Yeah. And I hear from a lot of single parents and I feel this myself too. I think as a single mom, the relationship that you have with your, with your children as a single parent, it just, it’s just seems so much stronger. And I think that’s what I hear you saying too.
Yes. Yes. It out every day, every day it gets stronger. The stronger my relationship becomes with God the stronger my relationship becomes with my daughter. Because if I look at, if I look at, by my relationship with my daughter and I measure it up to my relationship with God, then if I build a relationship with God and that relationship will get stronger, because God, I don’t have to do it. I don’t have to do it alone. He can help me. He can guide me and he’ll remind me that I’m not alone. So then I teach my child. You’re never alone because you have me and you have God.
That’s good. Yes. So along the same lines as far as the support system, you have God. And then earlier you mentioned that you had your friends. Did you have anyone else for a support system or is that who you relied on?
It was more of me having that some family around some friends, some friends that even if they’re working around, I can call them on the phone. It was just it was just a combination of both, and you know, sometimes, you know, as single parents, we want a shoulder to cry on and if we don’t want, we want to pick up that phone and we want somebody to just listen, don’t talk, just listen. So I can vent. And I am, and I can be heard. And because I just need you to listen right now. And that’s, that’s the way my, my friends and my family work. Just someone who can listen, listen to, you know, you know about parenting and what I’m going through. And they offered their advice. And now, I mean, that was great. That’s advice that lasts a lifetime, you know, and that’s how I was able to get through a lot of meetings. When it came to single parents.
What advice would you give to a brand new single mom?
The advice that I would give is that enjoy your children while they’re home, enjoy them, because they’ll the times that they are at home and they’re small. You are going to miss out. If you don’t enjoy them then because they go through that sweet stage and then they get older and then they want their distance. So they become independent. And then they want, you to kind of separate so that they can become who they are based on what you taught them and how you have shown them through guidance. How to be an adult. I say, enjoy your children. I say, be patient, be kind, remember long suffering. Remember that they’re not just children, they’re individuals and one day adults. So you want to put the best in, in your children that you have to offer, never look at them as just being children but people, individuals, and just as a single parent, just be that person that they can always come to. No matter what it is, no matter how bad it is, because those children have to go out and fight the world, just like you do every day and the world. Isn’t always nice. So what I would give to single parents is just remember your children, remember those memories last a lifetime.
And then lastly, what’s the most surprising thing that you’ve learned about yourself as a result of being a single parent.
I learned a lot about myself and I learned a lot about God. I learned that God, you know, as a single parent, that I can do the impossible. So when I learned about God and how he can do the impossible, I learned that as a single parent, I can do the impossible. That doesn’t mean that I don’t need help. Sometimes that just means that I have help and I can do the impossible. I learned that I learned to be free to be me. I learned that sometimes a woman just wants to be, and I learned how to be free just to be me. You know that I am not a label, but I have a name. I’m not Destiny’s Mom. My name is Theresa and I have a name. I have an identity and I am someone.
I think that’s great. And I was curious you said that one of the things you’re doing now is a voiceover.
Yes, yes, yes. I’m doing voiceover artists singing, acting, film as well as commercials.
So when you became a single mom, did you want to try to find a job that you could, that allowed you flexibility and hours and stuff? Is that part of your
Yes, because I always need to pursue my passions no matter what, no matter what I’m doing, whether it’s working full time and be a freelancer part-time I always want to pursue my passion because that’s what makes me happy. That’s what gives me that joy on the inside. So I always want to pursue my passions and for single moms, if you are out there and you’re working and you say, well, only thing I do is work. You know, the only thing I’m doing is this, and it’s the kids and it’s this, and it’s bad, you know, pursue your passions. Do what makes you happy. Cause then the end of the day, they’re going to move forward with their lives and do what is their passion? Why don’t you do, what’s your passion?
And you’re speaking that as of right now, too, because your daughter just went off to college. So you’re seeing the, the results of that too, right?
Yes. And one thing about being a single parent or a parent, a successful parent, is that whatever you show them, they’re going to go out and do, they may not have the same profession where they’ll learn how to overcome obstacles. They’ll learn how to move forward and they will learn how to pursue their passions.
So how did you know to do that at the beginning? I mean, weren’t you scared at the beginning and or what did you do at the beginning? Was that your first instinct?
Well, at the beginning, beginning of single parenting, I just had to learn to trust trust. If I learned, when I learned how to trust God, I learned how to trust the people that God sent into my life. I was nervous about being a single parent. I didn’t know what was going to happen or what I was going to do, but I know I had these passions. I know that I could do a lot of things. I knew that I was talented. I knew that I could do a lot of things. I knew it wasn’t just all about working for me or just, you know, the nine to five grind. I knew that it was more out there that I can do. I knew it was more to me as an individual than just a nine to five line.
And you just didn’t stuff it down.
No, I had to, I had to move forward. I had to move forward in my life. Whether I was scared, something times you have to do things, whether you’re afraid or not. How do you figure out who you are if you don’t step out, even though you have, you may have fears, you may have challenges. You may have obstacles. You’ll never know who you are, unless you’re able to just move forward and come out there and just try to make some things happen for yourself.
Yeah. Thank you. I think that’s really inspiring. So where can listeners find you and find out more about you?