Project Awesome

Making my life more awesome

Things to be thankful for

on March 25, 2012

Despite Big Girl’s continued absence, today I feel happy.  It’s been so light and sunny outside – I think spring is finally here. Yesterday I spent a busy, thought-packed, relaxing day with my church community. This morning two friends came over for coffee with their toddlers.  This afternoon Little Girl and I have had a relaxing day together kind of getting things done, kind of eating chocolate Philadelphia, walking to the park without coats on (well, I was doing the walking, she was in the pram being a sleep-refuser).  I expected today to be awful, waiting for my Big Girl to come back, but it’s been ok.

And recently I’ve been thinking that, even though this is not what I wanted, so far from what I planned, things could be much worse.  I almost feel fortunate.  The way my marriage ended has been so painful but it could have been messier.  And I’ve survived.  Ex-Husband loves our children and wants to do what is best for them.  He sees them, he cares for them and he provides for them. I know a lot of single mums in far harder situations. And if you have to be a single mum (or if you choose it) now is probably the best time to do it:

No stigma: Where I live, at least, there is very little stigma attached to being a single mum.  Society doesn’t appear to be questioning my morals.  I’ve not been sent back to my parents in shame. It’s just another form of family. And for my children, although this is not what I want for them, they will be growing up with many other children in the same situation as them. I’m just reading ‘The Handmaid’s Tale’ by Margaret Atwood and it makes me cry – in a dystopian, ultra-religious future, children born outside marriage are taken from their parents and given to infertile married women.  Ok, my children weren’t born outside marriage but I’m still a single parent.  It’s not the only reason to be glad not to be living in that world, but still…

Mr Tesco: When I was a student, yes, ten years ago, we used to walk to the supermarket then stagger home carrying about 6 bags of shopping with the handles severing our fingers.  I could be doing this again, but with the additional burden of a toddler and a baby and boxes of nappies to carry.  Fortunately, as Big Girl says, “Mr Tesco bring it”. I do miss wandering round the supermarket choosing things myself and have to put up with occasional rubbish substitutions (once they claimed there was no suitable alternative to a bag of Tesco value fusilli.  Really? No other pasta in the whole shop?  Really?) but it’s a small price to pay.

Facebook: I don’t get out much. Facebook keeps me in touch with my friends and with groups I’m involved with and with world events.  I have learnt of every celebrity death in the past two years and most economic crises through other people’s status updates. I can chat with friends on line. I can participate in group discussions. I can keep my mocking-my-friends skills up-to-date. I can rant about my neighbours banging on the wall. Or about Sky’s appalling customer service. It’s like going to the pub while staying at home.  With everyone I know.

The internet: 10 years ago, almost no-one had the internet at home.  Now almost everyone has broadband and I couldn’t imagine life without the internet.  As well as Tesco’s food delivery and Facebook, I can get almost everything else I need through the internet.  Amazon now sells nearly everything.  I can fill my evenings reading pointless arguments about parent and child parking spaces on Netmums. I can get dubious and useful advice on how to get a baby to sleep. I can make friends with other single parents. Essentially, I can take over the world from the comfort of my own kitchen while also looking after my children. That’s got to be a good thing, right?

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