I’m Sorry. No, Thank You.


To me, single motherhood can be summed up in one word: Late.

I wake up late, the kids are never to school on time, I spend most of my day running behind, I go to bed way too late. My to-do list is never complete and most of what I accomplish is late too.

And let me tell you, for this hardworking, punctual perfectionist, it hasn’t been easy. I want to do all the things, and do them well and on time.

Gratitude Woman Alone

Now, to be fair, I have way too much on my plate, which tends to define the life of a single mom. Too much to do, not even time to do it in, and never enough help or money to go around.

And the truth is, I struggle.

Becoming a single mother has been the most humbling experience. I simply cannot do it all, or do it all well, and no matter which way I turn, I could see where I’m falling short.

Trying desperately to adjust to new single mom life, I found myself apologizing endlessly. Which then made me feel like a failure, constantly apologizing for not being “enough”.

Then at some point, I realized it was dangerous to constantly apologize for something I don’t do intentionally. Because the reality is: I do my best. Every day, I work so hard to do all the things, for everyone.

And so, I shifted my language to one of gratitude.

“Thank you for waiting for me.”
“Thank you for accepting me.”
“Thank you for following up.”
“Thank you….”

Let me tell you, there are plenty of these to go around. And there probably will be for a while.

I’m about a year into single motherhood, and I know I’ll get to the point where my tardiness becomes less of the norm. But for now, I will keep working like crazy to be everywhere and do everything on time.

And for everyone who has extended my such beautiful grace, and accepted me late and underprepared, thank you. I’m so grateful for you.

Jenelle WoodliefJenelle is a single mama to two boys, ages 6 and 2.5, who owns her own business and does all the things, for everyone, all the time, just like you. Through her divorce, she embraced radical self-care and gratitude habits, which paved the way for a business supporting all the moms who put everyone else first.

Empowered Massage Technique is an innovative bodywork modality that empowers moms to be strong and balanced in their bodies. As a licensed massage therapist (OR license #19101), Jenelle offers a unique experience that will leave you feeling rejuvenated, energized, relaxed, and in less pain and discomfort. Plus, she will leave you with tools for caring for your body at home. Find her at www.jenellewoodlief.com, on IG at @jenelle.woodlief, or on Facebook for more information.


  1. I can relate to staying up late and too many things on my to do list, because I’m a mom with a business. Being a single mom would be so much more challenging, I’m sure! We are doing all that we can and that is enough. Thank you.

  2. I’m not a single mom but also made the switch from “sorry” to “thank you” and it feels so much better. I no longer spend my day apologizing, but rather feeling grateful for the grace others extend to me. And it helps me be more gracious toward others.

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