by mssinglemama on November 15, 2009

This weekend – the first of Benjamin’s “every other” weekends with his father – John Bear and I had two nights and one full day of long overdue us time.

We haven’t had a weekend solo since our trip to the Poconos and New York City in August… and given all of the stress I’ve been under lately with the new job, the family drama, Benjamin’s new school and life in general I wasn’t sure if I’d be able to mellow out enough to just enjoy him.

But I did. And we did – enjoy each other. Immensely. For 36 hours.


Being with my boyfriend, not as a mother and a girlfriend but just as a girlfriend, is hard to describe – but it’s one of those things any mother can appreciate, tapping into your inner-girlfriend. It’s essential to our survival.

I haven’t had time to label them yet, but check out my Fall 2009 Photo Album for a ton of new pictures from this weekend. Start here with this photo, to see the most recent. [We were in Cleveland – John Bear’s hometown and my new favorite spot on Earth – love that city. If you live there let me know.]

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Thanks, etc.
November 30, 2009 at 5:03 pm

{ 24 comments… read them below or add one }

mom23inmd November 15, 2009 at 4:17 pm

I know exactly what you mean! My boyfriend and I have been seeing each other exclusively for 4 months, and I think we have had only 2 full weekends alone together that whole time. My ex isn’t the greatest about visiting the kids, and my BF has kids who visit him, so scheduling alone time can be a bitch. That alone time always reminds me why it is so important for ALL couples, ESPECIALLY married ones, to make kid-free time a priority!! You really are a completely different person when you aren’t “on call” 24/7. It makes me a better mother when the kids come home, too.


won November 15, 2009 at 5:28 pm

If it is indeed essential to our survival, I’m doomed.


mssinglemama November 16, 2009 at 4:12 am

No way. There are a lot of options. Do you have any relatives? Or maybe if you find a man – he’ll be able to chip in for a weekend nanny every once in a while. OR – you can make a wonderful mommy friend and swap weekends.


Amyinbc November 15, 2009 at 7:08 pm

You two are TOO cute together 🙂


Kris November 15, 2009 at 9:51 pm

I don’t live in Cleveland, but I’m from there, and my family is there! Just caught your blog off of someone else’s blogroll!


Megan November 15, 2009 at 10:24 pm

Yay! You totally deserved it! I don’t have a boyfriend but I do try to have “me” time as often as possible where I drop off the little chickadee with family and go out to the beach or do something for myself. That “time off” makes me such a nicer person to be around (and a way more patient mom too).

Oh yeah, I forgot to tell you something really important in my last comment… you have the BEST blog! I love it! Thank you thank you thank you!


mssinglemama November 16, 2009 at 4:13 am

Thank you so much Megan!


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EB November 16, 2009 at 7:18 am

ya’ll are outta control cute together, just had to say it!

you inspire me and make me look forward to easier sweeter times.


Lara November 16, 2009 at 7:55 am

Those weekends are the best, aren’t they? I just had one myself, w/o the boyfriend though. But to be able to decompress, feel like a woman instead of a woman with a child-hanging-on-my-leg, and do whatever I damn well want to do when I want to do it is bliss…and I think it makes the reunion with the little one all the sweeter. Enjoy those moments of being you – whichever “you” you want to be!


Melissa November 16, 2009 at 11:58 am

Hi Alaina –
I just read the post about your conversation with ‘said family member’ and Benjamin’s birthday party. I am very sorry you have to deal with such criticism. I have a hard time with it too. I always think, those people who criticize me have nothing better to do with their time/life, and this is the only thing they have. Might not be the best option, though sometimes it works.

I myself will be a single mother in May. I hate doing this alone. But you give me that glimmer of hope that I’ll be able to round out my life with a solid relationship with someone…preferably ‘the guy’, not a bunch of inbetween-ers. Thank you for sharing YOUR take on YOUR life. Its nice to read someone else’s thoughts and walk away thinking all is okay.


boardermom November 16, 2009 at 12:00 pm

I think I forget sometimes, how to be a good girlfriend. I get so caught up in taking care of my daughter that I forget to make time for just myself and my boyfriend. I think, as a single mom, I often forget how difficult it must be for my boyfriend to adjust to not having the amount of alone time that we’d get if i weren’t a mom. After only 2 years of being a single mom (with no help from my daughters father), I’ve kind of forgotten how to have alone/quiet time. When my daughter goes for a day or 2 to spend with my mother, I don’t know what to do with myself 😛


HipM0m77 November 16, 2009 at 8:38 pm

You two look so incredibly happy in the pics! And I’m happy that you got to spend some much-needed alone time with your man.

I have the opposite situation going on, in that my boyfriend and I spend 90% of our time together when my son is with his dad. We’re going to spend an entire weekend together – the three of us – along with my entire family (my parents, sister, her husband and two kids) over the holidays and I’m already getting nervous. Introducing the boyfriend to the family is scary and brings up so many issues that I don’t even want to think about it. But, it’s essential to see how everyone interacts and how I can balance being a girlfriend/mom/sister/daughter all at the same time!


Haley November 16, 2009 at 10:46 pm

awww.. cute!


momma sunshine November 17, 2009 at 8:35 am

CBG and I are almost always alone when we’re together (granted, it’s only every other weekend, and would be different if we lived in the same city). I love being able to take off my “mama coat” and just be someone’s girlfriend and lover for a while. It’s made our relationship strong, being able to have that time to just devote to one another.


chrissy November 17, 2009 at 11:23 am

I’m from cleveland 🙂 love that little gem of the earth!


Sharon McMillan November 17, 2009 at 7:10 pm

What a smart way to put it…finding your inner girlfriend. I’m married but you know every now and then I feel the need to be a little special in that “girlfriend kind of way” and stop being the mom-nagging-teen or wife-nagging-husband-to-pick-up-socks person.

By the way, I’m not from Cleveland but, due to marriage, left my home town of Toronto to live in Cleveland (Shaker Heights) for 4 years. My friends in T.O. were totally baffled when I’d rant about how much I LOVED Cleveland (and still do). Some of the most enjoyable years of being a mommy and career gal in PR was in Cleveland (loved IABC Cleveland get togethers). Also love Cleveland Institute of Art, Westside Market, Cleveland Parks, Severance Hall, Chagrin Falls…can you tell I love Cleveland?


Jenna Jean November 17, 2009 at 7:38 pm

That’s a great picture of you guys. You got to think of yourself too and anyone who truly reads this blog knows you choose your child over yourself or anyone else every day of the week. Don’t let the sideline haters get you down!

Jenna Jean


Single Native Father November 19, 2009 at 11:55 am

I don’t know how I can contribute but perhaps seek contribution. I was turned over to your site by a wonderful friend who is actually the 1st cousin of my x wife. She has seen my growth in finding resolve in healing and then forgivness stemming from infidelity committed by my then wife.

Since many of you have heard this legacy before, I will not go there. Since my life has taken on a new path and the healing process moving forward. I recently took the risk of getting to know someone in my community a little better. Only realizing that I was way out of my game, showing all the signs the crush, the attachments and the I don’t know what I am doing syndrom, only to inevitably chase her off by not knowing how to deal with myself as a single father but also her as a single mother.

So with the graciousness of my great friend, I have found myself here on several occasions, peeking into the insight of a single mother. So in relation to this particular feed. I just wanted to say that I am not dating anyone as I feel as if I still have some processing to do. But find that in relation to the story above, I too found my business trips away to be somewhat healing and a time to ponder all that is, and for that am grateful about having that time alone. The hard part and the part I would like some feedback with, as it is something that concerns me is: Does anyone feel resentment when you return from these alone times, whether you are with someone or not? A resentment like you want more and had to return to reality? When I come home, I feel almost saddened by the fact that I my moments of solice were taken from me. Don’t get me wrong, I love my children so much and miss them so when we are not together, as I have bonded with them ever more strongly as they all live with me from 16 to 1 year old. But does anyone else get this sense of feeling? Is it wrong to feel this way? A little help and insight would go a long way….


mssinglemama November 19, 2009 at 8:32 pm

Thanks SO much for being here and for being so open.

I think resentment goes with the single parent territory. I get exactly what you mean. But Benjamin is a part of me, a piece of me – so I see it as resenting the decisions I made in the past while never, ever wanting to take them back and also resenting myself for not being able to give myself more emotional space.

Does that make sense?

Thanks for sharing.


Single Native Father November 28, 2009 at 8:50 am

I totally understand as I love my children dearly and know that the resentment is only temporary and only of the resent that I could not keep the moment of self for just a little longer and not a resent of the love that I have for my children.

Thank you for allowing us to share and learn here….


thisnewplace November 23, 2009 at 6:22 pm

I hear ya. I used to have trouble relaxing when the girls were gone and I was no longer a mother, for a few days. Now, I enjoy it and find balance in it and consider it healthy for my relationship. I love girlfriend mode, and being able to sleep naked on those weekends.


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