I finally got to the place, in my second year of widowhood, that I felt ready to date. I had broken the attachment I had with my late husband. I found someone that I was interested in and felt some happy moments. We first met at a party and from there, our friendship grew from our phone calls. When he asked me out for our first date, I took some time to think about it. This was a big step.
Once I came to the conclusion that I wanted to be in a dating relationship, I was ready to go out with this new man. I think he sensed my hesitation in the beginning. We had to reschedule our first date due to bad weather for a boat ride so I patiently waited for the next opportunity. The day finally came. He asked me to go out that following Wednesday night for dinner and a boat ride.
Oh no! That was my daughter's, birthday. I recently felt that I had been taken care of my children's physical needs of being fed, clothed, and involved in activities, however, I also felt I'd been depriving them of their emotional needs. I already planned that I would be spending the day with Jessica on her birthday.
I couldn't believe I waited so long to go out with this man, and of all days! Why Wednesday? My heart sank. "I'm gonna have to pass. I'm so sorry. Can we do it next week?" A silent moment passed. "I'll call you back." He never did.
Our timing was off. I may have felt ready to date, but it couldn't be my priority. My daughters needed me. They didn't need their mother giving attention to a man; they needed their mother giving attention to them. I had to rebuild a relationship with my children before building a relationship with a new man.
I'm here to tell you many years later, that raising children on my own was one of the hardest jobs I've ever had to do. I was able to build such strong bonds with each of my daughters that we are very best friends today. If I hadn't taken them as my priority, to let them both know just how special they were, I'm not sure they would have the self-confidence and joyful spirit that they have today.