Tuesday, October 4, 2011

All The Single Parents

All the single parents: I applaud you. I am in awe of you, and although I am sure you love raising your children, I know it's not easy doing it on your own.

This weekend I was alone with Twig. This wasn't the first time, but this time we were both sick. Trying to take care of someone else in the middle of the night when you have the chills and are throwing up yourself is just plain awful. She wanted her mommy, and I wanted mine.

There is no question that having another person to support the weight of raising a human is helpful. Not to mention an extra set of hands. I know women whose husbands travel for work and are away weeks at a time. It is so challenging. When they come home, it isn't exactly easy either. Everyone has to readjust to the new dynamic.

But with two peoples comes opinions -- sometimes competing ones, too. The other day my daughter got a splinter and I explained to her that we needed to take it out. When we got home and my husband tells her it's ok, it will come out on it's own. We both strongly believed we were making the right decision by her. In the end we called out pediatrician and he agreed with my husband and now it is indeed gone. The downside: a minor moment of humility. The upside: an additional hands-on parent.

My husband gets back today and I am so happy. It's not like she and I aren't on our own most days anyway, but usually one of us is feeling okay. I am going to take a good long nap and shut down (which I know is virtually impossible for a single parent). I had always thought if I hadn't met the right person by a certain age that I would still want to have a child. I think that I would have done it, because I knew I always wanted to be a mother, but boy would it have been different. I was so ignorant. Even with a degree in education, years as a camp counselor, babysitter, and teacher -- none of it prepares you for the real deal.

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