Do you ever notice when you have a to do list you always save the most dreaded job for last. Well I suppose in some ways I did the same here.
At the beginning of summer I made a bucketlist of things I wanted to accomplish this summer and for the most part… I did it! I’m running Marathon number 2 in three weeks, I’ve dated, I’ve been flyfishing, I didn’t camp but did take my first vacation with just Henrik and I, and I have blogged about running. That leaves one last thing. Blogging about being a single mom. For some reason this one seems harder.
Harder because it is so personal. Harder because I want to be real and honest but hard because I don’t want to be negative. However something happened this week that made me want to write about this.
It all started with sewing a grill cover. I hate those black covers and I’m sure I could spend some big bucks for something high end but is still some dull color in the end. A friend commented how talented I was and I replied, “I got my mad sewing skills from my Mother.” It’s true I did! She is the sewing Queen! I have no idea how old I was when I started but I do remember sewing clothes for my cabbage patch kids, cross-stitching patterns, sewing mini-quilts and more when I was in grade-school. My mom was always sewing something and showing me how. It didn’t stop at sewing either. My mom was a very independent woman… a single mother raising two kids while working two jobs. We were very self-sufficient and she had that “Can Do” attitude all the time. I never saw her break.
So mom came over to watch Henrik and I told her about my latest creation and the praise that I gave to her. She replied, “Well I”m glad I did something right.” I knew what she had… Single Mom Guilt. How? because I get it too.
I often feel bad that when Henrik and I are together I’m not engaged in every moment with him. I don’t have wonderful things planned everyday. I’ve always told myself that Henrik is not my life but a part of my life. We share our life together. Most of the time yes… when we are together I take him into consideration but there are days that we just have to do life things like mow a lawn, wash some walls, clean the bathroom, hang the laundry or rip carpet out of the basement.
So it was a few days after the conversation with my mom that Henrik was helping me in the basement. I was pulling up carpet and he was scrapping the floor. He was having a good old time, holding up chunks proudly. I didn’t have to coax him, beg him or herd him to stay down there. He wanted to help. It was in that moment that in my heart I felt I was doing this right. I don’t have to give him every awesome experience. I don’t have to bring him to the zoo, the museum, the pool, play sports, or the beach everyday. I just have to show him what life is like. Some days you play and some days you work and no matter what… it all can be fun. We worked for another 20 minutes and I set down my scrapper and said, “You know what Bubby? I think it’s time for a Popsicle… you definitely earned it.”
Henrik and I share our life together… I love saying that. This is our adventure and as he gets older he gets a say more and more where it goes. There are so many things I cannot wait to show him like fly casting or bowling but I’m in no rush. I savor one adventure at a time and right now it’s bike riding.
My Mother thinks that she was a single mom who worked and perhaps isn’t sure if she did things right. She did (as well as my Father and Step-parents). They all did. They all taught me how to be strong, persevere, be relentless and most of all be a confident and fabulous parent regardless of my marital status.