Monday, February 8, 2010

a little of this..a little of that..

so as a single mom..
single parent..
time is tight!
most parents feel that!
and most are right!
(did not actually mean to rhyme!):)

But, as single parent the work load is increased.
You are IT.
and therefore the time you have is spread even thinner..
and the balancing act
even more precarious...

so HOW do you find the time
to talk with the kids..
how do you prioritize
what must happen with what should happen?

My kids and I have a typically busy schedule..
theater 2 afternoons a week..
basketball/cheer 3 evenings a week...
scouts 1 night..
church 1 weeknight and Sunday mornings...
I work 40 hours a week..
they have homework when they get home from school..
and then of course, there's the house and the laundry,
we have to eat at some point:)
and we have a few furry and not so furry friends to care for too!

so how??
its trial and error..
but I am starting to find the rhythm.
Communication is KEY!
we know that!
but it does not just happen.
and each kids wants some time with mom alone..
my son wants to talk in his room;
no sisters with 'big' ears nearby.
My girls share a room, yet they want their private time with me too...

And then there is me..I am tired!
How do I give and give and give?
sometimes I am spent..
and sometimes I am spread too thin..
yet, always I care deeply about my children!
so, how do I show them,
and give them what they need,
without depleting the only reserves I have?

so far, this is my solution
and it seems to be working well.
We have dinner at the table just 1 or 2 nights a week.
NOW every night would be IDEAL!
but I don't live in an ideal world...:)
we talk at the table..and its 'discuss time'.
I introduce a topic,
or we talk about something that's been happening in our lives.
its open..and they can share..and we all listen and respect each other.
I use the small amount of time for good and make it count.

We have family time once a week..
again, wish this was more often..
BUT, life is life is life..
normally for us family time
is a movie and Chinese on the weekends that they are with me..
or episodes of family ties one night during the week.
it works for us!

My son and I talk when I tuck him in..
I go sit with him a few minutes and make sure I am available!
It is sometimes only moments and its sometimes moments plus more..
But, its his!
I kiss the girls nightly,
sometimes I read to them before bed!
and sometimes I don't!
I have learned to do what I can,
rather then resent what I feel I must
BUT, one night a week each daughter
shares my room.
she treats the room as hers for a day.
This allows them each to have THEIR room alone one night,
and my room one night!
They are still young enough to enjoy a 'slumber party' with mom..
and before bed on their night,
we read for a little while and talk about 'girl' issues.
again..its purposeful and planned.
a small price for me..sharing my room..
a huge pay off with them;my undivided attention.
again, not for long..not for hours..not beyond what I can give..
BUT, long enough to reach from my heart to theirs...and sometimes that is ENOUGH!

I have come to understand that time is precious,
and in truth; it's limited.
But I can take the time I have and make it count..
and stop worrying so much that I can't do more..
I can stop feeling guilty that I don't have more time..
or that sometimes I am tired and don't have endless energy to share!
It is what it is..
but its what you do with what you have that makes the difference,
when all is said and done...

I had to narrow down what counts FOR me.
I wish we rode bikes every day..or went walking!
I wish we played board games every week!
I wish we gardened together!
I wish..I wish..I wish!
BUT, I KNOW we must be open and talk!
I know my children must find me a safe place to hide.
and so the rest?
it will happen if it can.
Sometimes we find time to walk and ride..
and sometimes we break out a board game.
and maybe one day we will garden.
But, capturing their hearts,
sharing in their lives,
being a part of this journey with them,
is where my attention goes.
The rest becomes the icing..
for me THIS is the cake!

still learning, still trying,..
but finding some solutions,
in a world that seems endless in its obstacles.


  1. I think that it is fab that you give up your room... what an amazing gift for your girls, even if it's just for one night.

  2. I think we all have the would have, should have, could have regrets when it comes to our children. As I tell my grown sons, I did the best I could with the time and tools I had. In the end, they remember the fun and not so fun more than 'your didn't do this with me.'

  3. Debbie,

    You honestly cannot do more than you are doing. You sound as if you are doing a sterling job there. Dinner around a table is a must and perhaps something you should always insist on whenever practical. That is by far the most important daily event in a functioning family.

    Keep up the good work

  4. Wow, I don't know how I'd manage and I only have a 30hr job and two kids with no after school activites....keep striving for balance, you will find it!

  5. thanks all...balance..balance..balance! WHERE is the pill for that???? :)