In what feels like a personal quest to help people appreciate your independence, instead of dread it, fear it, or be sad about it, I decided to write my Love Essentially column on the topic. I’ve been a single mom for 11 years now–hard to believe! Getting ultra comfortable with being alone, being independent and acting as the head of a household wasn’t easy, and it sure was scary. But I’m better for it, stronger, more empowered and loving life on my terms. Happy Fourth of July, everyone! Celebrate the holiday and then celebrate YOUR independence!
This year, celebrate your own personal Independence Day
by Jackie Pilossoph for Chicago Tribune Media Group
When I was a young mom, married with a toddler and a baby, there were times when all I wanted was to be alone.
I fantasized about escaping to a desert island where I could lie on the beach all day and hear nothing but the sound of an ocean. I adored my children, but I still occasionally felt smothered, or tired, and I longed for tranquility.
Just a couple of years later, after my divorce, I couldn’t stand being alone. I hated the silence when my young kids were at their dad’s house and I was home by myself. It was isolating, lonely and depressing.
Other moms would tell me, “Just enjoy the time off!” “Do something for yourself!” “You deserve a break.”
But I felt like I wasn’t allowed to appreciate time away from my responsibilities as a mother. The guilt of even the slightest bit of enjoyment was overwhelming. As far as I was concerned, “independence” was a naughty word.
The upcoming Fourth of July holiday got me thinking: What if our Founding Fathers had felt that same way in the 1700s as our country was being created? What if those patriots had instead viewed independence as a bad thing? What if they’d felt guilty for wanting to break away from England and let that feeling of guilt derail them? What if they feared their ability to self-rule?
Click here to read the rest of the article, published in the Chicago Tribune Pioneer Press editions, the Chicago Tribune, and several other newspapers across the country.
Like this article? Check out, “Stop Criticizing Your Body and Show It Some Love”