Sharon Yoder Speaks: Welcome to the World of Single Parenting!

     It is so wonderful to get to work with young parents who are forging ahead to get their college education, holding down a full-time job and raising children, all at the same time. It is even more amazing to learn that a high percentage of these moms and dads are Single Parents! Single parenting brings back a lot of memories. Today, I sort of enjoy thinking about some of the experiences I had while learning how to play this brand new role. There were so many things I had to remember to do in order to keep everything in a house working properly. I did not know how to repair anything. We had a shed full of some tools and equipment that were supposed to be used for something; but for what, I had no clue. And then there were all of the bills to pay on time and important dates like registration for Little League to remember and on and on and on! It is no wonder I walked around looking rather out of it. I guess I was trying to remember what I was supposed to do next!

     Since it was in the summer when I first learned that I was going to raise all five children between the ages of  2 to 16 all by myself, I had to come up with some new ways to keep the children happy and entertained during the day while I was at work. I broke the news to them. There would be no more summer camps or country club golf. The children were going to have to learn to entertain themselves. I explained to them that this change in our life could actually be fun. I reminded them that they were bright, creative children and that they would come up with a lot of fun and unique things to do with their friends. Well, they did. One evening as I arrived home from work ,actually,the very first week they were home with their older sister babysitting them,I saw a group of children in my big front yard. They were waiting in line to play their first round of golf! Yep! My boys, using a posthole digger from the shed, made a 9 hole golf course in our front yard with poles and flags and the works. They even had made a water hole and paid the little girl next door 25 cents to keep it filled with water. The children in line were each paying 10 cents a piece to play one game! Did I mention that I told them they should be creative?

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