Party of Two: Single Mamas by Choice in the Delaware Valley

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Lori Lovitz and Cora| Photo by Ashley Summers Photography

Glorious spring days revive the world with new life and inspire us to celebrate those who love and nurture like no other: mothers.

But what of the mamas who go it alone? There’s “Single Parent Day” in March, but it doesn’t draw the fanfare of Mother’s Day. Solo moms might not get showered with breakfast in bed, bouquets and gestures of appreciation, but they surely deserve the recognition—perhaps even doubly so for being both parents in one. We see you, single moms!

Below, two local mothers, who both chose the journey of single parenthood, share a bit about what makes their families special.

‘Mom, I have a beautiful life’

Amy Jerrehian was born in Philadelphia, raised in Lower Merion and has lived in Wynnewood for almost 25 years. At age 45, a successful real estate professional, she declared her intention to become a mother on her own.

“For many years, I participated in the Race for the Cure around the art museum each Mother’s Day. As I walked with my mother and grandmother in 2005, I boldly announced, ‘I am going to adopt a child,’” says Jerrehian. “There was no turning back at that point, and the process began, eventually leading me to my ancestral homeland of Armenia.”

 She did encounter obstacles along the way. “In fact, the very next Mother’s Day, I remember crying by myself. I had recently received disappointing news from my adoption agency and felt my chance to become a mother was slipping away,” she recalls.

Amy Alan Bogusky Credit
Amy and her daughter, who is now 16 years old | Photo by Alan Bogusky

Within days, however, Jerrehian was surprised with a thrilling development. “A baby girl had been born, and I needed to plan a trip halfway around the world to meet her as soon as possible.” Seven months later, in December 2006, she was delighted to bring home her daughter, who is now 16 years old.

 Jerrehian has a loving and close-knit extended family—her parents live nearby, as do her siblings, who have children of their own. One cousin is the same age as her daughter.

“When they were young and their grandmother bought them matching outfits, they were often mistaken for twins,” Jerrehian says.

“During the early years, I often remarked that being a single mother seemed harder physically but emotionally easier than a two-parent home. That observation reversed once she was older and more self-reliant and I had to make all the parenting decisions myself,” notes Jerrehian. She cherishes her bond with her daughter. “Throughout it all, being her mother has been more fulfilling than I ever could have imagined.”

At the age of 5, Jerrehian’s daughter said to her, “Mom, I have a beautiful life!” Reflecting on that moment, Jerrehian says, “If she only knew how much her future was changed by a decision I made prior to even her birth. The beauty of our life together through adoption is celebrated every day.”

The ‘dream job’ of motherhood

The path to single motherhood was different for Lori Lovitz, of Philadelphia. Being a mother was something she had envisioned from an early age. “I had a lot of love to give, and I wanted a family of my own to love and nurture. I’ve also always wanted that responsibility of being someone who could teach a young mind in order to ensure a better future for humanity.”

Contemplating life after an un-lasting relationship, Lovitz realized that she was “far more certain about wanting to become a mother than about who would be the best partner.” She decided to put dating aside and focus on the prospect of single parenthood with the help of a clinic.

It took nearly five years before she conceived her daughter. “I was the last patient in the fertility suites before they had to shut down operations due to COVID. The pandemic changed everyone’s lives in one way or another, but I actually became a completely different person. I became a mother for the first time when Cora was born in December 2020. It was as if I finally got hired for the dream job I had been searching for my entire life,” Lovitz says.

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Lori Lovitz enjoys motherhood | Photo by Ashely Summers Photography

Becoming a mother also changed her priorities and her vision of where “home” should be. Though she was raised in Philly, Lovitz had moved to Chicago in 2008, thriving in her job as a neurologist and building a supportive village of friends. “But it wasn’t the same as having actual relatives close by,” she recalls. So, last fall, Lovitz relocated to live closer to her parents and her sister’s family. It was difficult, but “very much the right decision at this time of our lives to create this family-filled world in the city where I grew up, and [have] the opportunity for my daughter to be closer to her cousins and have precious childhood memories with the only extended family she has.”

As for Mother’s Day plans, “I certainly don’t expect anything from my 2-year-old daughter, but we will both make the day special for my wonderful mother and my sister who is also an exemplary mother,” says Lovitz. “The important thing is that my daughter and I can actually hug everyone.”  Family is truly everything.


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