We all want what we don’t have. It is true for just about anything; short people want to be tall, tall people want to be shorter, old people want to be younger and the young wish to be older. It is actually rather rare to be completely, 100% happy with what we have and who we are. Me for instance; most of the time I am fine with being a single mom, it’s tough but I’ve kind of gotten used to it, but then there are times when I’m not.
Going out and seeing father’s with their children and families enjoying time out together makes me realize what I don’t have. I always wanted the whole family deal and I ended up with the wonderful kids but instead of the loving husband and father I got an asshole I never really wanted to have kids with in the first place (It’s a rather long story but lets just say not all forms of birth control are great). There is a pang of hurt when I see these families and I have to wonder why I couldn’t have that. Trying to picture a family for my self is actually starting to become difficult, like it’s an alien concept for me.
I think after all this time my basic instincts are kicking in and I’m just waiting for some cave man to come grunting by and club me over the head so he can drag me back it his cave. Courting was such a simpler thing back then.
Oh how I envy the irresponsible, the individuals who are only responsible for themselves. I remember a time when I had total freedom, I could have lived as a Nomad if I so chose to (and there was a time in my youth that I would have loved to be a hippie). But that isn’t how it is any longer, now there are times where I start to feel like Atlas, holding up the sky all on my own. After a time it starts to wear on you, like a weariness that sinks right to the bone and leaves behind doubt.
I find my self shaking my head at how much people take for granted in their lives. Some times I think what I would do if given a chance, a day, to just do whatever it is I want with no worry, no stress (first thing that comes to mind is usually silence, blissful silence). But in truth I don’t even remember what it’s like to not think about my kids and the responsibility that comes hand in hand with parenthood. I have realized that being a parent means that your wants and needs come second to those of your children. It is a slightly depressing thought and even though I don’t like it, in the end it is worth it
As a single parent I can say with complete certainty that raising children is definitely not a one person job. Sure it’s doable, it is possible, but it takes its toll on those that do it. I constantly wonder if I’m doing it right, if I am being a good mother. I am sure that I will always live with this inadequacy, this question haunting my every action, but live with it I will.
So those of you without responsibility, without things to really worry about, I envy you your freedom so please don’t waste it.
So recently I succumbed to the not so tender grasp of the flu and with luck, so did my daughter. Nothing like being sick and having to take care of the sick to make you feel helpless. It kind of brings to mind the whole blind leading the blind statement. But it wasn’t just feeling helpless when taking care of my daughter but also dealing with my rambunctious son who happened to have missed getting the virus. I pride myself on being able to handle being a single mom and everything that comes along with it, but that flu had kicked my ass.
I am a rather stubborn women with a fair amount of pride and I absolutely hate to admit when I need help (I’m pretty sure most people are similar though don’t realize it). Anyway when I was laying on the couch curled up in the fetal position mentally fighting my stomach I realized just how alone I was. Most people when they are sick can just take the time to rest and recover, but when I was at my worst and needed someone, there was no one but me. I am the type of person that will take care of the people that are important to me when they are ill; I guess you can say I mother them :). It was just a little deflating to realize that there was no one there to return the favor when it was my turn.
Well it was a good thing I wasn’t sick for long and I was able to take care of myself and my daughter while not tying my son to a chair(though it was rather tempting at times). I think I rather stick to taking care of others rather then feeling sorry for myself since it’s not my cup of tea. I definitely have a new found appreciation for being healthy. I just hope that others out there don’t take for granted the people they have around them and what those people do for them.
There is just about nothing better then a soft bed, a comfy pillow, and a fluffy comforter. I love my bed and yet we have a very complicated relationship. No matter how tired I may be as soon as my kids are in bed and silence finally descends on me all I can think about is how much stuff I can get done without them under foot, or the chance to actually watch something other then cartoons (though I must confess, there are some cartoons I get as much enjoyment out of watching as they do). But no matter what it is sleep and my bed are usually the furthest things from my mind. I am a night person and so I usually feel more energetic and awake once the sun goes down (might also be because my children are in bed). Then morning comes around and even on those lucky days when my kids actually sleep in my oh so pleasant internal alarm clock wakes me up at 8 anyway. Oh how I try to deny the fact I am a wake, how I cling to the fading dreams and pray that sleep will return, but in the end it never really works. I lay in bed for as long as I can (usually the increasing need to pee makes staying in bed impossible) and then its back to morning routines.
There are times when I am talking to others and they like to tell me how they slept in until noon, and how tired they are, and I can start to feel my hand twitch with restraint. Don’t they know that you never talk to a parent about sleep? We don’t want to hear about your 12 hours of sleep, or how tired you are since you just worked eight hours. Being a parent is working full time and then going home to work another full time job. Luckily the little monsters are cute and are usually good for a laugh or two, most of the time they don’t even know why they are being funny which just makes it even better. It amazes me sometimes to think about my pre-mother life and how I would feel exhausted if I didn’t get eight hours of sleep, and now I could get four hours and still function (pretty sure I’m just working on auto-pilot on those days).
So enjoy every hour of sleep you get and never take sleeping in for granted. Even though I am sure most parents are like me and if you do miraculously sleep in you just end up thinking about all the things you could have gotten done in that time.
I remember being a kid and thinking it took forever for every thing to happen. Christmas and Birthday’s seemed eons away and time seemed to move at a snails pace. It may have been worse for me simply because I was not a patient child, well in truth, I’m not really a patient adult either. I find it’s like I blink and a week has gone by. The fact that my last post was 9 days ago and I could have sworn it hadn’t even been a week.
It feels as if time just swallows me whole and leaves me feeling disorientated. Between work, kids, house work, and an attempt at a social life, time just rushes by. As a parent we tend to measure time passing in the growth of our children. My son just lost his first tooth and it had left me wondering where time had gone. He now has an adult tooth coming in and it hits me that he isn’t a toddler any more, he’s my boy. Then in the fall my daughter starts school and I can’t help but think that it all went by so fast. My head spins when I try to think about it all.
The passage of time is getting difficult. I am getting older. My birthday to me is hard, not because of my age but more because it serves as a reminder that I am not where I had planned to be at my age. It’s hard to deny your age when your birthday creeps up and rubs it in your face. I make jokes and brush it off because there isn’t much else I can do about it. But I think I’ll take my Grandma’s advice (though I’m sure she got it from some where) ” you are only as old as you feel.” I like it so that’s what I work for, she also said, “Pick an age you like and stick with it,” which is why this year will be my 4th annual 25th birthday.
Advice for parents: life with kids is busy, especially with work and whatever else that’s happening, but make sure you make time for yourselves. It’s good to remind yourself that you are not just a parent, You are a person that has your own hobbies, your own likes and dislikes, and it is important to remember who that person is.
It makes me cringe every time it happens and yet I feel powerless to stop it. Sometimes when I open my mouth and speak I can’t help but wonder, “What the hell did I just say?”. But in the end it doesn’t matter, I am turning into my parents. I remember being a kid and I couldn’t believe some of the crap my parents would say to me and now I find myself repeating them to my kids. The empty threats, the bargaining and the little schemes. It is kind of funny in a way because I know exactly how full of poop I am and yet they seem to fall for it (I don’t swear. I didn’t really do it often before I was a mom but I do it even less now and I have even made up my own swear words, my favourite are “For Pete sake’s”, “For crying out loud”, “MOTHER”)
I actually dread the day when my kids start calling my bluff. My favourite empty threat is if we are out and they are being difficult and/or not listening I say “would you like to wait in the car?” I obviously wouldn’t do it but it works on quieting them down. I am waiting for the day they actually answer with a “Yes”. and I’m left with trying to come up with a good retort. The funnest one would be the one my dad used while we were on road trips, “Don’t make me come back there.” I said something similar to that the other day and as soon as I said it I started laughing. It is just something so ridiculous and yet they believe it.
Growing up the idea of being like my parents was scary. I’m sure a lot of kids had the thought that they would be better, do better then their parents had, but in the end you can’t seem to fight nature(or nurture depending on your side of the argument). I have actually come to appreciate my parents and my family in a new way since becoming a single mother. I don’t even want to think about what my life would have been like if I didn’t have the help and support of my family. My life isn’t perfect and it is far from easy but things could have been a lot harder if it hadn’t been for them, so maybe turning into them isn’t such a bed thing after all.
A tip for new parents: never trust silence. Kids are never up to anything good if they are quiet 😉
So today I was reading some stories with my daughter and I couldn’t help but be a little wary of the story lines. In truth they are the same ones that I grew up with. Girl meets prince, girl discovers she is princess or special in some way (usually ends up in some sort of trouble) and is rescued by the before mentioned prince and they live happily ever after. Now I have to wonder if all this princess stuff is good for her. I gotta admit that Disney seems to have given their princesses a little more balls but it in the end it all seems to be about “true love” and getting married. I grew up watching this stuff and I’m pretty sure got brain washed by most of it. Even after every thing I’ve gone through in my life and with every shitty relationship there is still a part of me that still believes in true love. I would definitely label myself a hopeless romantic. I will apologize ahead of time to all the prince charming’s out there, but even though I believe in true love I really don’t think you exist, I would put you right up there with unicorns and dragons.
So I’m just wondering if exposing my daughter to this sort of stuff am I building up this expectation for love and romance for her? Am I brainwashing her in to believing it all? I know that I may sound cynical but it’s just what my past has taught me. I like to think that it is more being cautious then cynical (maybe a bit bitter at times). I do want my daughter to believe in love, especially in today’s world and I know she isn’t going to learn it by using me as an example, so is it these movies and stories the only way to do it?