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Sunday, February 27, 2011

I'm not a single parent...

The first thing I usually do in the morning is check the widow blogs I follow to see how everyone is doing. It usually helps me get through the day feeling not so isolated in my experience of the world right now.

This morning I read this one: Widow's Voice Blog and it resonated with me. Especially the part where she makes the distinction between being an "only parent, not just a single one".

I've tried to rationalize my plight to myself by telling myself there are a million single parents out there and if they can do it, so can I. But it's never really quelled my frustrations with doing this alone. And here's why: I am the ONLY one who will ever kiss a boo-boo, clap at their school play, get on them for bad grades, talk to them about their first boyfriends, hug them and kiss them goodnight, make sure all the presents are under the tree and that Santa didn't forget something, make their lunches for school, help with homework, take them to the doctor, take them to the park, encourage them to follow their dreams and believe in them that they can acheive them...

I don't have the luxury of another parent getting visitation with the kids every other weekend and on Wednesdays so I can have a break and some time to myself. I don't have someone else who will also lecture them about bad grades and making the right decisions in life. There is no one who might be able to take the day off work when they're sick because I don't have any more sick days left to take. I don't have anyone else who will show up to support them at soccer games, or pick them up from school if I'm running late, or who will be a confidant to them when they are mad at me but still need someone to talk to. I don't have a co-pilot in this thing.

I realize that divorced people don't always have that either, but the vast majority of them do. They both get to have a role in their child's life and participate in parenting. They have the option of deciding to be a part of the child's life- they make the choice about how involved they are going to be. We didn't get that option and it pisses me off.

I don't want to be the only parent...


  1. great...distinction...great. i think i'll start telling people i'm an only parent.

  2. Love this post Brooke. It's something I think about often and it pisses me off too. I like the distinction...only parent.

  3. I use the term, "lone parenting". All the work that we widowed mom's do without any breaks, even grocery store "breaks" would be great! And...add the heartbreak of our grieving and helping our children through their grief, yet keep the few memories they have of their father alive so we can instill into the children, how great of a person he was and how much he loved each of them.
    I think of you often, Brooke. You are a great writer and making a difference in this world wide widowed of my favorite blogs to read...I can identify with you so much, unfortunately for both of us.
    Thank you for your heartfelt words!

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  5. Interesting that you now call yourself a single mom in your profile. Perhaps you are beginning to "read into the small things" less.