Monday, June 21, 2010

Single Mother Dreams Big...

Back when I spent beautiful weather days stuck to a chair and could only look longingly through the window at the trees blowing in the wind and sun shining, I dreamt of being a stay at home mom. I dreamt of early morning runs pushing strollers, weekly hikes with my curious young'un, a house without mountainous piles of dishes nor laundry, volunteering at our new church, writing grants for worthy causes in my spare time. I was sure there would be pounds lost as I'd get so much exercise. Miraculously papers would be organized, receipts in their proper spots, thank you notes sent immediately and handwritten notes just to say "Hi" to friends now far away.

That dream.. ooo It was NIIIICE.

Then reality came.

I'm now an unemployed single mother. (That carries its own baggage and tasks. )

None of that stuff of 'my dreams' is happening. Nadda.  You know why?

All that stuff is about me. Things I need to get done. Things I want to do. Self care things. Those are all things that keep me happy. Keep me feeling confident, safe and in control.

We've been together more than 5 months now. For a long time- my time NEEDED to be 100% about his care, his confidence, his safe environment, his relationship to me.  But the time has come to find a balance.  The time to start taking my own self care seriously is here. And that means- that he is going to feel some sort of sacrifice of his needs-- -  so I'll need to manage that too.

Add it to the list.

No one ever told me how short the days are when you aren't bored. No one ever taught me to schedule my life around the sleeping patterns of another. No one ever told me how important those sleeping patters are. No one ever told me to double my grocery budget and that the vast majority of what I bought would be wasted on a fickle appetite. No one ever told me that my eating habits would change dramatically. No one ever told me that 3 year olds aren't interested in being strapped in a stroller as soon as they wake up. No one ever told me that my own sleeping patterns would be structured around his.

Balance. It's always been one of my most difficult challenges. (truth be told- I've rarely ever practiced it)

7 comments:

Liz said...

Yes, yes, yes, to everything in that paragraph at the end!

But I do think that if/when we can take better care of ourselves, we'll be able to take better care of them.

Shannon- said...

That is a great theory Liz. One in which I'll add to truth column on pure hope!

Kimmie said...

Hi Shannon;

So nice to meet you...praying God blesses you as you mother your 3 year old. Time passes quickly, they grow so fast, cherish the sleepless moments...they too are a gift (though oft times don't feel like it in the moment.)

Let me know if I can pray more specifically for you (or your unemployment.) Praying for you now.

xoxo
Kimmie
mama to 8
one homemade and 7 adopted

Karen said...

And I'm so glad I found you, Shannon! Love your blog, your stories and your photos!! :) ~Karen Wistrom www.family-from-afar.blogspot.com

Kristen, The Pajama Mama said...

oh, they could write a book about all they don't tell you before you become a parent. in fact, somebody should write that book! but it'd have to be a parent who would write it, and we know how busy they are!
you have my utmost respect -i can't how hard single-parenthood is!
nice to meet you, by the way! :)

Ladybugs appear said...

It's a vicious circle of needs & cheers to this post.

Billy & Megan said...

Isn't it interesting all the things motherhood surprises you with? I don't try to give much advice to women who are "expecting" anymore. I think it's something we all have to learn on our own. Thanks for visiting my blog - nice to meet you :)
Megan