Just two days before Mother's Day, Sheryl Sandberg took to Facebook with an essay documenting her first year as a single mom, urging others to understand the difficulties women face raising children alone. This will be the first year Sandberg will spend the holiday without a husband since her spouse Dave's sudden death at age 47.
The Facebook COO admitted that she may see life differently now than when she wrote Lean In and had a supportive partner in parenting: "I will never experience and understand all of the challenges most single moms face, but I understand a lot more than I did a year ago." The piece goes on to say how difficult it is in our society when there are father-daughter dances and Parents Nights that service as a constant reminder of what some do not have. Sandberg urges everyone to lend a helping hand to single moms, and not just on Mother's Day. "We owe it to them and to their children to do better," she writes. "We must do more as leaders, as coworkers, as neighbors, and as friends."