bonnie franklinSad news out of Hollywood today: Bonnie Franklin, star of the groundbreaking hit sitcom One Day at a Time, has passed away at the age of 69 from pancreatic cancer. And though she'll be remembered for many roles on stage and screen, Franklin's "Ann Romano" will always hold a place of significance in TV history simply because she was a single mother -- and when the series premiered in 1975, single moms hadn't exactly made it to prime time yet. In fact, just five years prior, the same network had doubts about letting Mary Tyler Moore play a divorcee -- on her own show!

And Ann Romano wasn't some glamorized version of a single mom, either.

With two demanding daughters (played by Valerie Bertinelli and Mackenzie Phillips), a busy job, and an oddly ever-present handyman, Franklin's character was often flustered, stressed, and/or pushed to the end of her rope -- but she was still a great mom who loved her kids and tried her best to find the good in every day ... one day at a time. A pretty accurate representation of single motherhood, if you ask me (and I happen to be a single mom).

The message Franklin and the show sent to single moms is pretty well summed up in the lyrics of the theme song, actually. If you don't remember it, check out this clip:

This is it. This is it.
This is life, the one you get
So go and have a ball.
 
This is it. This is it

Straight ahead and rest assured
You can’t be sure at all.

So while you’re here enjoy the view
Keep on doing what you do
So hold on tight we'll muddle through
One day at a time, one day at a time.

So up on your feet. Up on your feet
Somewhere there’s music playing.
Don’t you worry none
We’ll just take it like it comes.

One day at a time, one day at a time.

Hope Bonnie Franklin had a ball!

Did you watch One Day at a Time?


Image via clistcelebrity/YouTube