Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Single Mom Life Update

Things between ExH and I have actually been going rather well I dare say. We are having decent conversations, exchanging information regarding Rit without tension, and generally co-parenting well together. I am very happy about this.

I am part of an online group for single parents. I try to respond to posts and participate in discussions, but it is difficult when my situation is so different from most of the other single moms on there. Most of their topics are in regards to child support, the father’s visitation, father’s failing to actually be a dad, etc. While it was rough in the beginning and we still have the rough spots, things are going well between ExH and I. He is a good dad to Rit, we don’t have child support to fight about, we have 50/50 custody so it is not considered visitation, we keep to the times outlined in the parenting plan, and we try to be flexible in case something happens such as illness or a family event. When compared to them we are really doing well, which honestly surprises me at times. Reading about their experiences, I was expecting it to be like that.

Right now I am at that weird place of being single where I am enjoying the freedom of being single yet want that familiarity of a significant other. I really would like to start dating, but that is proving difficult. I honestly have no idea where to start. Also add in that any guy I date needs to be okay with dating a single mom, it is going to prove to be a challenge.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Single Lady and a Single Mom

Being single versus being a single mom. It is a difference I have been reminded of several times in the last few weeks.

Thursday, Friday and Saturday I am essentially a single woman. ExH has Rit for those days so I do not have to worry about him. Don’t get me wrong, I miss him like crazy, but I know he is safe. I can go out when I want, for as long as I want and not worry about having to find a babysitter. Sunday through Wednesday I am a single mom. My world revolves around my little boy. Where I go, when I go, and for how long all depends upon him.

There are times I get down about being a single mom. Within my group of friends and family, there were 10 babies born in 2011. I am the only one who is currently a single mom of those 10. Most of them were not, and still are not, married when their baby was born. However, they are still together. I admit that I get jealous of this. I was married when I got pregnant and had my child. We are taught that this is how it “should be done”. Yet, I am the one who is a single parent and my friends have someone there to help and support them. When there are issues with Rit, or there is something going on I really want to do or see, I do not have a partner I can turn to for help. It's just me.
On the flip side of that issue, I have several other friends who are single and childless. Their schedules allow them to go out and be with friends at times when I can't because Rit is already in bed. So, more often than not, I will be home while my friends are out and hear about their fun later on.
There are benefits to being a single mom as well. The only schedules I have to worry about are mine and Rit’s. We can go where we want without having to see if someone else wants to go as well. Once Rit goes to bed, I have my quiet time without interruption.

Someone said to me recently that the arrangement ExH and I have is great because I can be a single mom half the week and a single woman the other half. I agreed, but then I really thought about it. While I may not have my son 3 days a week, I am still his mom 24/7. While, it is great that I can go out and be with my friends on the days that ExH has Rit, I don’t think that makes me any less of a mother.
I realized recently that it has been over 9 months since ExH and I separated. Yet, I have not been asked out on a single date yet while several of my friends who became single after I did have been on several dates. The biggest difference is that I have Rit. I knew that being a single mom would make dating more difficult, but I don’t think it really sunk in until this recent realization. Juggling being a single woman and a single mom is no easy task. I look up to the mothers who are able to do it and hope that one day I can be as good at it as they are.

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Kentucky Renaissance Festival

This past weekend I attended the opening weekend of the Kentucky Renaissance Festival and it was a blast. I have been attending renaissance festivals for 13 years now. This is the first time I really attended as a single person. I am so glad I did too.

The weekend started Friday with us camping at Lake Jericho. A group of us have been camping there every opening weekend since 2008. It started as 4 people. This weekend there were 11 people camping! We had a tent compound going on. I carpooled with my brother and another friend. We were the 2nd car there and set up our tent as soon as we unloaded. As the other friends arrived, we helped them set up tents and got the fire pit started for dinner. I was worried it might be weird for me to camp in the tent alone as I have never done that before, but it was just like going to be alone at home.

Saturday we got up at 6am to get breakfast and get dressed for the faire, which opens at 10am. Our campsite is 20 minutes away. We barely made it in time. It takes awhile to get dressed, especially when we are adding extra layers due to the unexpected cold. I won’t bore you with all of the details of the day, but there were many great memories made. I truly enjoyed my first faire as a single lady. That night we returned to the camp site and made dinner again.

Sunday we woke up, made breakfast again, tore down the tents, and returned to the faire.

I enjoyed being able to go around and do my own thing, see who I want see, shop where I want and for however long I want. I think this time as a single woman is doing me a lot of good. I am realizing the benefits of it, learning new things about myself, and having fun.