A few years ago Josh and I were stood at the conveyor belt in the supermarket waiting for the lady in front to pay for her goods so we could finish our shopping.
Her card declined.
She was mortified.
She began counting coins from her purse but didn’t have enough.
She asked the cashier is she could make a quick call to her bank; I overheard her ring her ex and whilst attempting to whisper she asked why he hadn’t paid her maintenance in again.
Her tiny baby began screaming.
She became more flustered.
I told the cashier I would pay for her shopping and handed over my debit card.
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She tried to stop me, told me she didn’t know when she would be able to pay me back and she offered to put all her items back – items such as Aptimil, nappies, wet wipes.
I told her not to worry, I told her it was fine, I didn’t want the money back and she left the store looking broken and ashamed.
Josh and I finished our shopping and got in the car.
He told me we too were living in our overdraft, we had five mouths to feed, bills to pay and I needed to realise I couldn’t save the world.
No, I can’t save the world… but I’ve been where she was.
I was once a single mum to two tiny girls after we walked out of our family home with nothing except the clothes on our backs.
Despite me having a decent career with a company car allowance after my bills were paid I was left with nothing at the end of each month.
I had to work so hard to start over again and it was shit.
It was the shittest, hardest time of my life and my debit card declined on me every single month.
I went to bed and woke up every single day feeling like I had failed my children.
So no, I can't save the world - but I tell myself if I can help, if I can teach my children to help someone, somewhere, each day. If we show more kindness, more love and support to one another then surely, it can only make the world a better place, and after receiving this email last night I reckon I'm doing it right.
This post originally appeared on the Part Time Working Mummy Facebook page and has been republished here with full permission.