“As single parents, we can’t accomplish everything on our own – we aren’t superheroes as much as we want to be! You need to be patient and know that God has a purpose and a story for you. Instead of looking ahead saying, ‘I want that now,’ figure out what your purpose is in this moment.”
Bethany shares her advice through the experiences of her own journey. A single mom since her son was born five years ago, she is finding purpose in places she didn’t expect. With her son’s biological father gone before he was born, Bethany began a relationship with the man who became her son’s dad. “Our relationship became very difficult. He would make bad choices that my son had to witness. We were caught in a toxic cycle, but then when my son was just a couple of years old, his dad was deported and hasn’t been a part of our lives since.” Bethany recalls feeling like a mess when all of this was happening but can now look back and see how God was working in their lives even through this difficult situation.
The adventures continued for Bethany and her son as they journeyed through 34 states over the next several years during her time as a travel nurse. “We made so many memories along the way. Wherever we would go I would take pictures, especially near each state’s sign, and we kept a map with our names and where we have been.” As her son approached school age, Bethany felt it was time to relocate back to Iowa. Even with a nurse shortage, however, she quickly became frustrated trying to find a job. “Fun fact – while I was waiting to get hired, I applied to be on a game show! My application was chosen, and we shot three episodes in one day – my part being virtual. I ended up winning an all-inclusive ski trip!”
After four long months of job applications and interviews, Bethany was hired as a nurse manager. “I know God put me there. He puts me everywhere for a reason and I try to figure out what that reason is. My job can be frustrating, but I know I need to stay for now. Doors are opening and I am seeing the difference. I have hope.”
Bethany loves watching her son grow. “His love for God is amazing! The volunteers at church always tell me how everyone loves him. He will often jump in and help clean trays after dinner, break into song, or dance during the service. It makes my heart happy when people say he came up to them and gave them a big hug. These are his people, and he has such a giving and wonderful heart.
“Admitting I can’t do this all on my own was the hardest part. But I have found a church that has always been in my corner. They mean everything to me.” Bethany goes on to share about being part of the Single Parent Provision Single Moms Group that happens at her church. “This is so much more than a meeting – it is a community filled with people that take care of one another. They are the kind of people you can call at any time, and they will be there to help you out. And in turn, you know you will help them out when they need it. We are all in this struggle circle together, but you have to build relationships and connections with one another. As single parents, we understand one another, plus we all have different resources and experiences that we can bring together to help.”
Bethany encourages other single parents, “don’t be afraid to not be okay. You have to know when your breaking point is and know when you need to reach out for help. You are not a burden whether you need help with children, painting a room, or moving a dresser – so you need to be able to reach out and ask for help. God has a purpose and a story for each of us.”
Bethany, thank you for sharing your adventure with us! We are thankful for the story God is unfolding in your life.
Published December 2022