Is there room as a single mother?

A lovely hello to you amazing people.  I have taken a brief intermission from reviewing Core De Force (hopefully I will return sooner rather than later) since things have been extremely busy for me.  Most of you know me well enough – a mother to a 5 year old daughter (starts kindergarten in a month), working a full time office position, exercising 5-6 days a week (usually at 5am), keeping my certifications and registrations current and progressive, trying to eat healthy, AND – are you ready for it – in a relationship unlike any I have ever had!  That’s right – let me give you the quick cliff notes – single mother (divorced) dating a single father (never married) with a 2 year old little boy.  

Look how grown up my daughter is looking –

Yes, that is us getting froyo together. 🙂

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It makes me smile to think about.  He makes me smile to think about.  The point of this is not to brag about my relationship – it is to expose the truths of dating after divorce and/or as a single mother.   I am sure somewhere down the line, you may get his perspective but we all know which is more important.  I am kidding.

Side note: My daughter’s father and I were married for a couple years.  He is an amazing friend and father and he and I have a still have a great relationship.  We talk to each other every day and co-parent extremely well.  We simply were not meant to be married.  The two men in my life have met each other and, because of their maturity, can be depended on in the future to do what is best for the kids.  This post should not discount the marriage I had because I learned from it, we raised our daughter in it, and we will continue to always be in each other’s lives.  I wish him pure happiness. 🙂

 I could go on for days and days about several topics (dating in general, a single mother dating, bringing families together, parenting), but I am going to condense it unless I get enough response otherwise.

I met him and his encapsulating smile about six months ago, we talked for hours that evening and have not stopped since.  It sounds cliche to write but it is the truth and I feel extremely lucky to have found this kind of romantic narrative for my life.  Okay – stop gagging.  If anyone had been watching us they would have described it as two people clawing to know as much about each other as quickly as possible in an attractive manner.  Is that possible?  What kind of picture did that paint?  A strange one.  We were intoxicated by each other from the moment we met.

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Some of you may ask if I was looking for someone.  I was not.  I was doing the ‘working mom’ thing and I am sure some people would tell you I had my ‘do not disturb’ sign on my forehead when it came to dating.  I was focused on my work, my health, and my daughter.  I was raised to be an independent woman by my strong mother and my idea of companionship/marriage/a partner is not that of a typical person.  I have never been swept off my feet, I never really pictured that fairy-tale romantic life for myself, and I have never depended on someone else (other than my mother).  One of the biggest obstacles we face is my independence.  He struggles to do nice things for me or help me because I have never really allowed a man to do that.  I am not sure he will ever understand how grateful I am for it since he thinks it is a given for a man to do such things.  If I were to give you a piece of advice it would be this – appreciate each other and make it known to each other.  When you start taking one another for granted, I am pretty sure things start getting rocky.

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Originally posted by vgdra

We both have our own share of baggage – but that comes with any relationship, right?  One of the least common is that we are both single parents.  He has never been married and he is an amazing father.  One of the most attractive qualities is how he fathers.  It is a running joke that I was attracted to him because of his son which he misconstrues slightly.  ☺  He understands that the child is priority, time is valuable, schedules are important (naps, bath time, playtime, etc), moving car seats from car to car is annoying, carrying snacks and cups at all times is a given, stepping on LEGOs and toys is inevitable, and scheduling is necessary.  Several people do not understand how important it is to understand these things.  While they sound small – trust me, they are not.  They are very big.  They are life changing.  They are crucial to raising a child, let alone, intermingling lives.

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There is a fine balance between spending family time together (all four of us) and just spending time together (the two of us).  I believe we will play on this teeter totter for the rest of our relationship but teeter totters can be fun, right?  It takes two to totter and neither of us seem to be jumping off anytime soon.  When the other gets a little too finicky – we speak our mind and talk it out.  We did not introduce each other to the kids or the kids to each other until we were certain it was right.  We wanted to make sure that we planned to grow our relationship, we talked in depth about any repercussions or questions that may arise from either of the kids, and what our plan going forward was going to be and the commingling (in my option) went extremely well.  One of THE most important things for he and I is protecting our child and this means being selective about the people we bring into their lives.  I took great solitude in knowing that he was on the same page as me and had a mature and loving mind to protect his child and care about the well-being of my own as well.

Side note: It also takes a mature and intelligent man to get along with my mother and family.  I high five him in my head for being so personable and likable to everyone.  His family is fantastic and I lucked out.  The more time I spend around them, the more I understand why he is such an amazing man.

My daughter took a liking to both he and his son extremely fast (as I assumed she would which can be both a blessing and concerning) and his son did well with the two of us.  Granted, he is younger than my daughter and I approached the situation delicately.  I do not know everything (I barely know anything) but I like to think that my very few years as a parent has somewhat-prepared me to handle such a situation better than if not.  They have become great play-buddies.  They play on the playground together, his son learns to share and socialize, my daughter learn to care for, socialize and teach – I believe that they have both grown since being around each other.  I love watching them eat popsicles together, hold hands during our family walks, call each other’s’ names from across the way, sit next to each other in the car, whine at the zoo together, eat and throw chicken nuggets on the floor, and be amazing little people.

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Originally posted by astrologyexplained

Yes, there are arguments/disagreements/whining and we referee enough to educate them and help them solve it among themselves.  It is quite a sight to witness.  Yes, we have run into the kids being jealous that the parent is paying attention to the other but we are learning to defuse and grow in these situations.  We continue to learn to partition our attention in such a way that time and energy is balanced between the two individually and together.  I interact with his son in order to build a relationship while he does so with my daughter.  It is an interesting sight to witness at the park and I adore him for the effort he puts forth.  We both only want what is best for the kids and we both understand it.

He and I respect the other’s parenting methods and only offer advice or our opinion when asked.  I believe that the fact that we respect, trust, and believe in each other plays a big part.  THIS IS HARD TO COME BY and I am sure we will face difficulties in the future.  However, I trust that we will cross the bridges together.  Sometimes we exchange judgmental (I mean loving) looks and the other will return a ‘shut it’ look – which I have come to consider our code.  It blows my mind how receptive we both are and how well we talk about e-v-e-r-y-t-h-i-n-g.  We began our relationship based off honesty and we have stayed true to it.  If something is on our mind, we talk about it.  We both agree that silent treatments, keeping things from each other, and lying are a waste of our time, not what we are looking for, and immature.  I will admit that I oftentimes say ‘just you wait’ when I realize he is going through something that I have been through before with my daughter.  I am sure that annoys him.  I think it is my way of saying – you cannot plan these things/these things happen/without actually predeceasing the future.  I apologize honey, I cannot help it.

I have more photos with this man than imagined.  Selfie-game on point.

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I oftentimes tell him he is doing a great job as a father – because he is.  I make sure he knows he can ask me for my opinion or advice at any time.  I also make sure he knows that he does not have to accept it as gospel.  I will admit – I learn from him every single day.  I learn to put myself in another pair of shoes, I learn to listen and communicate, and I learn to appreciate another point of view.  We work together to understand our families and try to be sensitive to the others’ needs.   

The patience and understanding he struggles to have with my fitness life is commendable.  Granted, we have run into a time where we had to hash out this priority in my life and we both admit it requires give and take from each of us.  When he met me I was sure to relay how hectic my schedule was (including working out daily, trying to prep meals/eat healthy, be a trainer, have this website, work, mom, etc) and that it was a part of who I am.  I cannot be upset with a man that wants to spend more time with me – right?  The one that wants to have a glass of wine waiting for me on the back porch and wants to hear about my day.  My priorities remain, and forever will, but I am adding to them.  To do this takes Tetris skills with scheduling and a mental mind shift from accustomed routine.

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He even makes an effort to show interest in one of the most important things in my life.  I am proud of him and flattered by his devotion to spend time with me and support me.

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Be with and appreciate the person that makes a huge fuss over your birthday and takes you to dinner where people stare and eventually ask how long you have been together and why you are so happy.  Be with the person that asks you daily if he can do anything for you to make your life a little easier.  Be with the person that understands your priorities and makes you one of his own.  Be with someone that tells you good morning every day and asks how your day was every evening.  That person that literally sweeps you off your feet to dance on your first Valentine’s Day, speaks to you with love and desire to hear your thoughts, kills spiders for you, interacts with your daughter that makes her feel included and appreciated, and makes you wonder if – maybe you were not looking for some-one but that you lucked out and were swept away by the one.

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Published at Sat, 22 Jul 2017 19:01:23 +0000