Archive for the ‘scattered thoughts’ Category

Being a single Mom-post divorce

Sunday, December 5th, 2010

Single Mom has many meanings to it. Could have been widowed, divorced, abandoned, the one in charge while the other is off fighting our war, chose to have a baby on your own… what ever your circumstances, single Mom doesn’t define you. None of us are truly alone in this parenting thing. Yes, you get to make the rules in your house (hey that’s a bonus in my mind), but you’re not single, meaning one and alone.

People ask me how I do it. How do I raise 3 rowdy boys by myself. Don’t kid yourself folks if I had to do this by myself, I’d have gone insane by now. So would you. I have family, friends, coworkers, teachers, doctors (no shrinks yet maybe someday, but her I’m referring to their awesome pediatrician), and countless others that help me in some large or small way.

My ex-husband and I share a unique relationship. We’re friends. I know scary right? We realized that as we grew older our needs from our relationship changed (see future post of getting married too young) and we had grown apart as people. It wasn’t that we didn’t talk, we just grew up into the people we were meant to become. Different political views, social views, priorities, plans for fun, hobbies, you name it. Yes, we had our past, our kids and some interests but fundamentally we had changed.

One could argue that we could have made it work, compromised and gone into eternity settling. However, we only have one life. We only have this one body in this one lifetime to do what we were put here to do. If you compromise on what you want out of life, then what’s the point? We agreed on this point and agreed to be friends.

Don’t get me wrong it wasn’t skipping through the daisies all the way to divorce court. It was a long, tiring road, filled with emotional hurt, spattered with arguments and fights, but our long term goal was to be friends and be there together as parents for our kids. We both agreed that when you love someone enough to be married and have children and build a life together for 15 years, it would be a disservice to all that was good to trash it with nasty words and bitterness that may have felt a tiny bit good in the moment but long term would hurt us, or worse, our kids.

People don’t know how to take a friendly divorced couple. If it’s a nasty divorce you pick a side and together you bash the ex. People in our lives looked at us funny. People from both sides of our lives shunned the other person because that’s what you’re supposed to do right? Wrong. It’s funny how some people can be totally uncomfortable about your divorce even when you’re fine with it.

People ask me if I’m happier now that I’m divorced or if I’m better off. There’s no happier or better off, there just is. There’s no more fights, but there’s loneliness. I never knew this kind of loneliness before. It’s not just the quiet nights in the house when the boys are with their Dad, it’s the loss of people in my life. First there’s his family. Yes, they are great people and they didn’t shun me out of their lives, but it’s not like I go to all of their events anymore. People feel uncomfortable, I think you get a social plague when you get divorced. People want to give you your space. That space is quiet and empty. Your married friends with family don’t spend as much time with you because they think you’ll feel awkward now that you’re alone. Maybe it’s just me, but I prefer to be around people.

People ask me if I’d do it all over again. All of it? Maybe not. But yes, I’d still get divorced. My ex found and married a wonderful woman. They are extremely happy and perfect for each other. She’s a great Step-Mom to my kids and as someone with a great Mom and Step-Mom, I know how important it is to have many loving people in your life. It still takes a village to raise kids. I know my heart will find happiness again someday and until then, I write jokes 🙂

It takes strength to look inside yourself and ask yourself what you truly want out of life. If you do this and you’re not currently doing what you want, fix it. Change your life, you only get one. If you’re living your life to please someone else, then in the long run you’ll only hurt each other. But do it with dignity, respect and honesty. Cherish the people in your lives, they enrich your life for the better. Even the crazy ones. After all I bet some of the best times in your life came from knowing one of the crazy ones.

Signed,
One of the crazy ones