Sunday, June 24, 2012

Challenges, Discovery, and Awakenings

I have lived in my home for a little over a year now. Let me tell you what a big deal this is. Since I graduated high school in 2000, I have lived in 15 houses. Yes in 12 years 15 houses. The longest one yet was my last home in Alaska, which I lived in for 18 months. 6 more months and I will have that beat. I am starting to get stir crazy, yet I know I am not ready to leave here yet. I have the most amazing neighbors and friends here, they have helped me get through the good times and the bad. They love and accept me for me, and I love them for that.

The past year has been full of growth. Though I have been alone, and a single parent much of my adult life, due to deployments of my ex-husband, I have always had something to countdown to, a goal to look forward to; this is not the case in my current situation. There is no end date to being a single parent.

I have the most amazing kids. They are funny, smart, entertaining, kind, compassionate, charitable, happy, energetic, really I could just go on and on. They make every day worth the struggle it may bring. I love them with every fiber of my being, and could not imagine my life without them. It has been a nice adjustment to this new life to have distance from my ex. I haven't had to worry about split holidays or which weekend I have with my kids, I have been able to create a stable existence, and been able to figure out this new life without the complication of really dealing with someone else and their wants and their schedule.

The struggle in all of this for me, comes in finding a balance. I have never felt so many different pulls in different directions all at the same time in my life. I must be a mother, cleaner of the home, cooker of meals, full-time student, friend, nursery teacher, devoted saint, a single woman, coordinator of schedules, and provider. There are probably more, but I can't think of any at the present moment. If I leave my kids I am bettering myself as a mother, because I am taking a break to rejuvenate, but when is too much? If I don't leave them, I inevitably get overwhelmed and frustrated, and don't spend the quality of time with them they need (quantity is there, not quality). If I take classes, do I go full-time and get it done faster, but deal with the stress of it all, or do I go part-time and have a lighter load, but take longer, and then with that decision do I work or spend the extra time with my kids? There are so many attributes devoted to balancing this act.

Many nights i sob, knowing that I am not enough right now. I have made sacrifices to try and balance things, but I still struggle with finding peace in the balance I am able to have. I know now that I completely took for granted the opportunity I had to be a stay at home mom. I am happy with where I am at relationship wise. I am happy being single, I am ok with it, it has taken me over a year to get here. Then those awful days creep up on me and I think of what I could have, what is out there for me, and I long for it. A partner in raising my kids, someone to man the grill at parties, someone to go on dates with, and to romance me. To lay my head on their shoulder, to talk about the day, and to fall asleep in their arms. Someone to laugh with and make memories with. That person that will be there to watch in awe as Ethan scores a goal in soccer, or to help Aidan pull his tooth out. That partnership that we were all made to want, and to have. I have learned to live without that, and find joy in that, but that in no way means I don't want a companion, and welcome it when the time is right again.

As I struggle to make this balance every day, being the sole person showing love to my children, being the one that disciplines them and the one that teaches them right from wrong, the one that changes the diapers, makes them food, the one that teaches them how to read and how to do their own laundry, I know i am doing the best I can. I hope that when I look back at it, I will see I did enough. For now I guess I am just taking it one day at a time, and doing the best I can do.