Finding Love as a Single Mom

A white woman and man sitting together and drinking coffee

By Coco May

After a long day of meetings, I was sitting at Changi Airport waiting for my flight back to Bangkok. I had been away from my kids for two nights and had just finished my goodnight FaceTime with them. They were giggly excited that mommy was coming home and would be there when they woke up.

I stared into space thinking about all the things I needed to do when I got home, writing a to-do list in my mind. A young family sat in front of me with two exhausted-looking parents trying to wrangle a little boy who just wanted them to pull his Trunki and an older girl who was sulking because her iPad battery was about to die. The man was in a suit and had clearly either just finished work or had been to Singapore on business. The woman, with a soft North American accent and long flowy dress, was negotiating with both the toddler and girl, trying to avoid World War III. The dad picked up the little boy and, with his other hand, reached into his satchel and tossed the girl a power bank. Both kids’ faces lit up and the mother’s face melted in relief. I smiled as I watched them. He turned to his wife and gave a cheeky wink.

Such a simple gesture but it was so powerful. 

His wink said “we got this, babe” and “you can thank me later” all in one. It was flirtatious yet supportive, and it gave me goosebumps. 

On the flight home, I thought a lot about that wink. You see, I’ve been officially single for just over a year. For five years before that, I was in an unhappy marriage. There had been no winks sent in my direction for a very long time. Certainly not the flirty kind.

I didn’t realize how much I missed it.

My life is full of love now. I am told every single day that I am beautiful by my sweet three-year-old son. Affection is abundant and every day I get more than my fix of kisses and cuddles. I feel loved and I give love. I am not, however, in love.

How do I even find the time to meet someone between work, school activities, and being a full-time parent? I’m not sure I even have the energy for it.

Then I remember the wink.

The goosebumps.

I feel motivated to find the time and energy to meet new people. I remind myself that if I want to be on the receiving end of a flirty wink, I must get off my sofa.

I go on a date set up through an online app, but it goes nowhere. Life gets busy, the memory of the wink starts to fade, and the fire that was sparked is now more like some smoldering ash. What I crave is the idea of a soulmate, a partner in crime, a crush. It’s the wink. I want the flirty wink from my best friend. I’m just not sure he’s hanging out online, waiting to meet a 40-year-old single mom. One thing’s for sure—he isn’t hanging out on my sofa.

I reactivated the app about two weeks ago. Not much has changed. But occasionally, a man steps up and sparks of potential fly again. 

One man grabs my attention and we spend a few days having intense debates via Line. He is divorced, with a young daughter of his own. So far, we are one dinner in, but a dinner that lasted four hours as we discussed everything from commodities trading to parenting tips. I am sure we have the foundations of a great friendship. Whether there is goosebump potential remains to be seen. A second date is locked in so that’s a start. The fire has been stoked, and I am excited about the idea that I may one day find my wink. 


This article was first published in the BAMBI Magazine, February 2019 issue.


Photo from Canva. 


About the Author

Coco May is an Aussie expat in Thailand. She juggles being a single mum with a demanding career. She has learned to never say no to a good kid’s club and is not afraid to call Mama noodles “dinner”.