Single mother Mary Gulivindala, of Chestnut Hill, is seen a few years ago in New York’s Central Park with her sons, James (left), now 12, a student at St. Philip Neri School in Lafayette Hill, and Ravi, now 15, a student at Springside-Chestnut Hill Academy.

Single mother Mary Gulivindala, of Chestnut Hill, is seen a few years ago in New York’s Central Park with her sons, James (left), now 12, a student at St. Philip Neri School in Lafayette Hill, and Ravi, now 15, a student at Springside-Chestnut Hill Academy.

by Mary Gulivindala

I am a single mother; how can this be? This was not supposed to be my reality. You see, I was raised by Betty Crocker to cook, clean and wash, make all of the beds, feed the kids and speak softly.

I was never told I could be a doctor, a lawyer or a judge or a CEO, but I could learn to make fudge and brownies and meatloaf, mashed potatoes with peas; this was to be my life.

I was happy, and I was prepared to become a loving, loyal wife. 

It was a dream that came true, that day when you and I said “I do,” and I did, but you didn’t; you couldn’t be in it. All the noise with the kids, diapers and dogs; the grass is always greener in someone else’s back yard.

So you didn’t, and I still do. I do it alone; yes it’s true. I’m not hateful or rageful or angry or hurt. I’m done with all that. I did all the work, and I still do so I can be true to my boys and me. They are the focus of my life, filled with toys and noise.

And it’s hard; yes it is. I pump myself up sometimes just to put on a smile when I hear them enter the room because that is what matters. And at the deep part of my soul I feel guilty because I don’t want to do it alone. People say, “You are not the only one.” Well honey, I sleep with one. Me. And it is lonely, you see.

This is not the life that I planned. I feel side-swiped, blind-sided; he ripped out the carpet right where I stand.

 I’m doing life a day at a time the best that I can. How much can I do? Get a job, wake the kids, walk the dogs, clean the house, be the driver and the coach, and come on, where’s the pot roast?

I can’t be daddy. I can’t be daddy. 

So the dream was shattered; yes, that is completely true, I don’t like it at all, but what can I do? I can wake up in the morning and stumble to my feet, put the coffee on without skipping a beat, walk the dogs, wake the kids, put on a smile before the morning quiz over waffles for breakfast, then into the car off to the races.

Rushing around like that is obviously not living in the moment, so I have to breathe deeply, as in relax, and realize that I am exactly where I am supposed to be in life. It’s the NOW that counts!

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