Where’s the GPS to Help me Navigate my Double Life?
May 11th, 2009 by Christina

Yesterday was Mother’s Day–the first with R in absentia. The girls served me coffee in bed and gave me the perfect gift: a GPS. It’s a gift for them, too, because, hopefully, it means they will never again have to see their geographically-challenged mother become hysterical after missing an exit. (Plus, if I choose the device’s “Ken” voice, it’s a little like having a man in the front seat with me, tee hee.)

When R was still in residence, he made sure I got to sleep late on Mother’s Day and my birthday, a formality the girls chose to dispense with yesterday morning. But thanks to our 50/50 custody arrangement, I know that next weekend I can sleep as late as I want.

It took me a while to adjust to my new double life, where every few days I morphed from harried single mom into … what, exactly? Floozy divorcee? Sexless spinster? The jury was still out.

Those initial weekends sans kids were surreal. I hadn’t spent 48 hours alone in over a decade and there I was, on my own for an entire weekend in our eerily quiet, very, very still house. Without sibling squabbles to moderate, snacks to serve, and playdates to plan, what was I supposed to do to take advantage of this crazy new freedom? Should I run with scissors? Dance naked in the living room? Dance naked while holding scissors? The possibilities were both thrilling and terrifying.

At first, I felt naughty even contemplating doing something just for me, and worried that the Social Services Dept. might show up if word got out that I’d done something self-indulgent like taken a mid-day nap. In the end, here’s what I did during those early kid-less stretches:

  • Discovered the joy of not cooking for days in a row (peanut butter, anyone? It is high in protein, you know.)
  • Threw myself many lavish pity parties, during which I sobbed and wondered over and over and over how it all could have gone so wrong
  • Learned that jigsaw puzzles can be very engrossing, distracting and, in a way, healing (metaphorically putting the pieces back together and all that…)
  • And, yes, danced around the living room. Fully clothed, no scissors.

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2 Responses  
Anne writes:
May 25th, 2009 at 10:43 pm

I just had one of those indulgent “kidless” weekends. Rented movies, took long walks, took a 3 HOUR nap on Saturday, had breakfast out with my neighbor (sans 2 year old eating all my food or a 4 year old talking our ears off), languished on the couch watching something other than Dora and Diego and read a great mystery from cover to cover with minimal breaks. It was heaven….until their father called a day early (Sunday) with a report of “The kids want to go home.” It took all my strength not to verbalize my tantrum: NOOOO!!!!! *pouts* Mama had to go back to work a day early. It’s OK – Mama didn’t need a quiet Memorial Day. ;-)

nageneiluff writes:
June 3rd, 2009 at 7:49 pm

Sweet blog. I never know what I am going to come across next. I think you should do more posting as you have some pretty intelligent stuff to say.

I’ll be watching you . :)

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