“Don’t be ridiculous, Charlie, people love the parents who beat their kids in department stores. It’s the ones who just let their kids wreak havoc that everybody hates.” ~ Christopher Moore, A Dirty Job
The life of a single parent is hard. It is damn hard. There are many days when I wonder how I can possibly do it all – wake up, make her breakfast and a lunch to bring to school, race to get her to school, race to make it to work on time, race to pick her up from afterschool, bring her to her scheduled activities, go home and make dinner, spend time with her, do household chores, exercise – and still stay somewhat sane.
On Monday night, she asks me if I am going to her spring concert. “Sure,” I said. “When is it?”
“Tomorrow night,” she answers.
“What?! Tomorrow night? Why are you just telling me about it now?”
“I forgot,” she retorted.
I told her that because I was not given ample notice and that I already had other things planned for Tuesday evening, I would not be able to attend the spring concert but that I would still drive her to school so that she could perform. She seemed content with that.
On Tuesday, I drove her to school in the evening and I picked her up after the concert. I asked her how it went, and she said that it went fine. She then mentioned to me how “Ally’s mom and JJ’s mom were there and they recorded me and told me how great I was.” I told her that I would ask them for a copy.
When we got home, she asked, “What did you do the whole time during my concert?”
I told her that I had made dinner and some other household chores. She said, “That’s it?”
I answered, “Yes, that’s it.” I could tell she was angry that I did not attend her spring concert, but after all the prior weeks preparing for her Communion, I really was not in the proper frame of mind to attend her Spring Concert, especially considering that she had failed to mention it to me until the prior night.
She then blurted out, “I wish you were like other moms.”
I told her that I wished that I was like other moms, too, and that I wished I could get the help that they have — a husband or a family to help them with everything since I was alone and doing all the work of bringing home an income, making sure that she gets to/from school, eats three times a day, and has activities she can do to keep her mind and body busy.
Some days are just damn hard. Yesterday was one of them.