Since becoming a single mom six years ago, Theresa Frontz has managed the role by being in constant conversation with God.
“It really is my faith that has gotten me through every day,” says Frontz, who lives in Gulfport with her children Nicholas, 18, and Mary, 13. “One of my favorite scriptures is ‘I can do all things through Christ that gives me strength.’”
Even before getting out of bed, Frontz starts each morning with prayer. She then reminds her son to drive carefully, drops her daughter off at school and goes to work as a relief services assistant with the Navy-Marine Corps Relief Society at the Naval Construction Battalion Center in Gulfport.
Frontz admits that in facing each day’s challenges, not having a spouse to talk to or help make decisions can be difficult. Since losing her husband, Mike, suddenly to sepsis in 2013, she’s not only had to adjust to parenting solo, but also acquire a number of new maintenance and repair skills. However, her son Nicholas has stepped up to help around the house — one of the many ways Frontz’s children have made her proud.
“My husband was my son’s best friend; they did everything together and spent hours tinkering,” she says. “Nicholas has come to our home repair rescue time and time again. He amazes me with his knowledge of how to fix things.”
Not only does her son have a servant’s heart, according to Frontz, but he is an “old soul” who is wise beyond his years.
“He can strike up a conversation with anyone,” she adds admiringly. “He is the type to walk in a room full of strangers and leave with a room full of friends.” A senior who graduated last month from Gulfport High School, Frontz says Nicholas recently earned the rank of Eagle Scout and plans to major in business finance and minor in ministry at Southeastern University in Lakeland, Florida.
Mary, a seventh grader at St. Patrick High School, loves science videos and medical dramas, her mom says, and also is a talented athlete; her first year on a recreational soccer team, she earned a place on the Allstar team, then the Select team, and she also excels in basketball and tennis.
“She is quiet and reserved, but a very deep thinker,” Frontz says. “When she speaks, she has thought things through and is wise.” Her daughter helps people and animals wherever possible, she adds, volunteering at her church, the Humane Society, school and elsewhere.
When everyone is home, Frontz says, her family’s favorite thing to do is watch a movie together, or just talk and laugh.
“My son is a big jokester, so we are always laughing at something he says,” she adds. “It makes my heart happy to see my children smile.”
Frontz admits to many “mom-of-the-year award moments” but doesn’t dwell on her mistakes. Instead, she picks herself up, asks for forgiveness and forges ahead.
“Do not worry about tomorrow; tomorrow will take care of itself,” Frontz advises other single moms. “And, most have heard this — always wash your face, brush your teeth and make your bed. Sometimes, making your bed is the only thing you’ll have accomplished completely.”
Because so many responsibilities fall to her, little things can be a big relief to Frontz — like help with vacuuming, folding laundry and other chores. When she needs recommendations for honest repair people or other adult support, she relies on her friends.
“I always ask for prayer as well,” Frontz says. “That’s free, and I know God hears.”