Jana Kramer Marks First Thanksgiving Without Her Kids After Divorce: 'My Heart Hurts'

"I have a feeling whether it's the first holiday apart or the 30th there will always be an ache in the heart," the country star captioned an emotional Instagram post on Thursday morning

Jana Kramer
Photo: Christopher Polk/E! Entertainment/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images

Jana Kramer is marking her first Thanksgiving without her kids.

The country singer, 37, shared an emotional Instagram post on Thursday morning, speaking about the struggles she's facing on the holiday as a single mom after filing for divorce from retired NFL player Mike Caussin, 34, in April. The pair share daughter Jolie Rae, 5, and son Jace Joseph, 2, who appear to be spending Thanksgiving with their father.

"Happy thanksgiving 🖤. I'm beyond thankful for my beautiful babies," Kramer began the post, sharing a photo of herself holding hands with Jolie and Jace, all three smiling at the camera. "My heart hurts not being with them today and I have a feeling whether it's the first holiday apart or the 30th there will always be an ache in the heart… BUT How grateful and thankful I am that I'm their momma."

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She then added a message of solidarity for those going through a similar situation: "Thinkin of all the others that are having a 'first' holiday of loss or missing or just a difficult time," she wrote. "Let it out and then let's eat and drink our feelings 😂😂."

Earlier in the day, the One Tree Hill alum shared a raw video of herself on her Instagram Stories crying on the couch at her Nashville home.

"Happy Thanksgiving," she said to the camera through tears. "First one without the kiddos. I knew it was going to be tough but the rainy weather outside is not helping."

She then pointed to the tears rolling down her cheeks and said, "I'm going to finish this, go for a run and count my blessings, because there's a lot to be thankful for. But I also think it's okay to feel the feels … The holidays aren't always easy for everyone, especially if you're having a first."

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Kramer has been open with fans on social media about the emotional toll of being a single mom, and navigating life after her split from Caussin after six years of marriage.

In September, the star discussed the toll the divorce has taken on her in an episode of her podcast Whine Down, and said she couldn't hold back her tears after her surname was legally changed back to Kramer.

"I cried because my kids' names... those are my kids. It felt so separated and that really sucked," she said. "Taking Caussin, we were like a family, even though I took Kramer on some things, and it was easier."

jana kramer
Jana Kramer and her children. jana kramer/instagram

She said that officially having a last name different to that of her kids "broke [her] heart."

"They're my kids. They should have my last name, like I birthed them. They came out of my belly and I have them 70 percent of the time. How does he get the last name?" she said. "I don't know, that really hit me kind of hard. But after I cried, I said, 'I'm Kramer, yeah! I've always been Kramer.' Then I cried again. After that I was like, I'm never changing my last name again, I will never."

In an emotional Instagram post announcing their divorce in April, Kramer wrote that it was "time" for her and Caussin to go their separate ways after six years of marriage. A source told PEOPLE at the time the split was due to Caussin's infidelity.

"'It's time.' As I try to make sense of a reality I never wanted to believe could be possible again, those words have now become a reality," Kramer wrote in her post. "I've fought y'all. I've loved hard. I've forgiven. I've put the work in. I've given everything I have, and now I have nothing else to give."

An insider told PEOPLE in early September that Kramer had begun dating again, as she and Jay Cutler, a retired NFL star and Kristin Cavallari's ex-husband, had been on one date together.

In early October, a source shared with PEOPLE that they had already called it quits: "They went on a few dates but in the end Jana is still single. They realized they're better off as friends than dating," the source said.

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