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By Mark Pellington, Director, Producer

I never planned on being single dad.

I never asked to be a single dad.

I was thrown into it suddenly on July 30, 2004 when my wife Jennifer suddenly passed away, leaving me alone to raise my girl, Bella. But we are forced to face these tragic circumstances with despair and resilience. A combination of humility, and pride. I never thought I could do all the things I have done with her, all the needs a child has, that a single parent has to do.

Thank you, God. I have had so much help raising her, from a wonderful giving saint from El Salvador named Mimi, And other dedicated nannies, teachers, friends, family, helpers, guides, givers, loves, and tribes.

Truly a team seeing me and Bella through orthotic boots, developmental delays, my sobriety, parent’s death, scrapes, booster shots, fevers, virus, headaches, heartache, relapsing, sobriety for good, Canada, New York, Europe, Puerto Rico, school abroad, amusement parks, zoos, pizza parties, Bahamas, Broadway, hugs, sniffles, truth, high schools, pre schools, kindergartens, report cards, learning, lessons, teachers, preachers, churches, gods, God, monsters, visits, trials, tribulations, panic, heartbreak, helplessness, powerlessness, power and pride, Nordstroms, lunch money, backpacks, dogs, no dogs, birthday parties, school plays, diapers, shots or no shots, film shoots, rock stars visiting home, movie stars as buddies, brunch, lunch, habits and hobbies, cemetery visits, playdates, lice, twice, birthday party etiquette, memories, cupcakes, car seats, booster seats, diapers, puberty, braces, sickness, health, tears, and joys.

If you told me this was going to be my life, I would have said no but once I survived.

I say, thank God for my child, my life, and for the joys of being a single parent.

I am blessed.


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