Texas calling.

by mssinglemama on March 15, 2011

I didn’t take enough pictures. And I didn’t network enough, or attend enough panels and I didn’t rest enough.

But enough with everything I didn’t do.

I did meet a new friend. A friend I have had virtually through Twitter for years. And, as always, it never ceases to amaze me at how absolutely beautiful, stunning and wickedly smart my readers are.

Over lunch we discussed our lives, our jobs, our sons and the stress that it all brings. The fine balance we are walking every day.

“What if I broke a leg? What if he did? What if someone in our family was sick?” And the real kicker, “How do we work and raise our kids without losing our minds in the process or f—- them up?”

We have no answers for each other and we can’t come up with a solution because like all of the modern working mothers in America, we are too busy to represent ourselves, to demand affordable and quality child care, to re-balance our work schedules to mirror the needs of our children–the future leaders of this country.

There is no one speaking for us because we are all too busy keeping our heads and our children’s above water.

And while we have equality at work, things are still unbalanced at home. Many of us are still doing just as much as we were. And that’s assuming we even have a partner at home.

When I started Cement Marketing, I had John. And I can’t say I would have done so, or come this far without his help, without knowing he would be there to help in the future. Now, I am here with the business, with Benjamin and completely alone. This wasn’t in the plan and I’m having a very hard time diffusing and de-stressing in order to manage the work load and to be the best possible Mom I can be.

All of this and more I tell Sunny and she knows because she’s been reading for so long, so she knows me as well as anyone.

We decide to escape from the world after lunch, and to take some time for ourselves, together. Mommy rebels.

First a stop for manicures.  And then boot shopping for Sunny.

Throughout the store you could just hear women gasping, “Oh my God! Oh my God!” Because of boots like these

And these

Sunny chooses a lovely pair from Ariat.

She’ll have them for years, I say. And once you try Cowboy boots you’ll never go back.  Back on the street again we stop for a few pictures.

I wish I could just be one of these guys for a day.

A few minutes later Mai Le, a fashion blogger, stops me on the street to take my picture. I had bought the dress that morning and changed in the shop because the Texas heat caught me off guard. So did the wind, couldn’t keep the dress down.

You can check out Mai’s fashion blog, but she didn’t end up publishing my picture. Must have had something to do with my eyes squinting into her camera. But Sunny caught some shots. Including this one.

I’m such a dork. Posing or modeling… can’t do it without making fun of myself.

Later we headed to a bar for some dancing and guy meeting.

I’m dipping my toe in the water and have been trying to get back out there, but it’s not easy. I feel so weighted. Sunny says I’m mourning and not ready yet. But, mourning or not, we still have an awesome night. After all, we are in Texas and there are men and music and tequila everywhere. My three favorite things, even if I can’t have them all.

The next day I’m on a plane and plotting another trip this summer. But this time I’m taking my little man with me… to Jackson Hole for a stop to visit his Uncle Ezra and (hopefully, Sunny and her little man) before we head up to Glaciar National Park. No Internet. No work. Just mountains and this beautiful, beautiful country of ours…

Am I boring you?

I’m sorry if you all thought this blog would become more exciting with me being single and all. I’m afraid there’s not much to report during my fantastically boring re-adjustment phase.

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{ 23 comments… read them below or add one }

Sheila March 15, 2011 at 11:47 am

You perfectly verbalized my current greatest frustrations as a single mom right now. I am exhausted. I am filled with worries. I am teetering right on the edge, hoping for a blast of luck to come along.

We need help, but who speaks for us, really? If anyone knows, I would love to know.

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Erin March 27, 2011 at 1:36 pm

Sheila – I contacted my church and sought counseling and advice, and they paired me with a WONDERFUL family that has counseled me through every step of the divorce transition and we have maintained our relationship of friendship now three years later. When I have concerns, they go to bat for me. If you can find someone who is older/wiser and is willing to “mentor” you and help you out, that would be the best way to feel like you have a team behind you.

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Kelly March 15, 2011 at 5:23 pm

I’ve been on my own for almost 5 years now and I can say it does get a little easier as they get older and can do some things for themselves. I haven’t hit the teenage battles yet (they’re 11 and 9) so we’ll see how I handle that when it comes along. There has to be a realization that what you are able to do is enough. In the beginning I drove myself crazy trying to do/be everything and everywhere. But then I realized that making sure they are loved is the only real important thing. I find that teaching them to be independent is much more rewarding than having them need me at every moment. Not that we don’t enjoy being together and they like me to be there, but they realize there is only one of me and I can’t be in two places at once. They each can function and be happy even when I’m not there and in the long run their self-sufficiency and independence will help them become responsible adults- and isn’t that the goal?

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Anna March 15, 2011 at 5:49 pm

As a teacher, I’m really stressed out right now, and like you said, doing it on my own. I do have a partner, but he lives 900 miles away, so I have the emotional support, but not the physical support, which would be nice (a hug?) when headline after headline says that you are the root of all evil in this society and that you are a greedy good-for-nothing. Don’t want to go all political, but wanted to share that this national witch-hunt is adding a lot of stress to my already hectic life.

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Crissi March 15, 2011 at 11:08 pm

Thank you for changing kids’ lives through teaching. The headlines suck, and some bad examples of teachers have been glorified, as well as human qualities of other teachers put up on the stake to burn. Just today, 95 teachers got pink slips in our county. It’s not fair. And I believe those who share your profession have one of the hardest and most thankless jobs out there. So, thank you for all that you do. I believe in the importance of teachers.

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Heather March 16, 2011 at 10:00 am

My district sent out 535 pink slips and I am currently on the road to unemployment while being a solo parent!

BUT, I must admit, strangely enough, as beyond stressful as it is going through this fear, anxiety and uncertainity solo… there is also something invigorating about the experience. I find that I am tapping into personal reservoirs of strength and confidence that I never knew existed.

AND, when I do come through this hell — and I know I will — it will all be through my own power. Kind of like a “I am woman, hear me roar!”

So, yeah, it is tough going it alone… but, at the same time, it is also such an amazing opportunity to be met with such challenges that will continue to provide excellent moments for unparalleled self-growth and development into becoming the fantabulous women we are all meant to be! Oh, and the role models we become to our children!

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Crissi March 15, 2011 at 11:04 pm

I’m constantly afraid something bad will happen to me, and play that fear game. If I lost my job, broke my leg, got deathly ill, died….who would take care of the kids, drive them to soccer practice, check their homework, cheer them on at baseball, take them to camp, read to them at night, make funny voices for our cat with them, have those heart to hearts…. I’ve decided the only answer is to become immortal.

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Kristin March 16, 2011 at 3:58 am

I am so glad you hooked up with a kindred spirit. And man, you look gorgeous in Mai’s fashion shoot.

I am all around proud of the work you are doing to forge ahead with your awesome life, lady.

Proud to call you my friend,
K

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Christian Single Mother March 16, 2011 at 9:33 pm

Thank you so much for your honesty. I really enjoy reading your posts.

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Memoirs of a Single Dad March 16, 2011 at 9:47 pm

I feel like I gain such perspective ‘from the other side’ reading blogs like yours. Single mom or single dad, the road is bumpy, it’s full of up’s and down’s, and no one really has all the answers. But I can’t help but thinking that talking it over with those in similar situations and those that have ‘been there, done that’ never hurts.

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mary March 17, 2011 at 11:12 am

nice article,kkep posting gals. wait for your other articles

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Jaxe March 17, 2011 at 11:26 am

If there’s a ‘LIKE’ button on your site, I’ll click on every post.

Sometimes I feel as if we are denied the same dreams other parents have, because we are so preoccupied with the ‘what ifs’. The real fear is that if we don’t make it, there is NO backup plan.

There were so many days I thought I wouldn’t make it. But, as always, we HAVE TO make it, and so no matter how difficult it sometimes become, we simply have to bite the bullet and drag our feet forward.

I figured the only way is to live life a day at a time, holding on to that little pair of hands that is the only thing keeping your sanity, and his/her smile will tell you that the both of you will turn out just fine.

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Sarah March 17, 2011 at 10:22 pm

Ahh, love this post. Sunny is fantastic!

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Viktor Ego March 18, 2011 at 7:00 am

Those who want to find the perfect partner compatible with your date of birth, then come through my signature on the card of love.

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Vanessa March 18, 2011 at 7:37 pm

I found your blog about a year ago when my husband decided to leave the marriage. It has been a source of comfort for me knowing that I am not alone. Someone else in my age range with the same interests is out there struggling too but making lots of things happen for themselves. You are an inspiration.

Thanks for your blog, the beautiful pictures and the honesty. I wish I could have been in Austin doing some boot and man shopping too. Those boots are gorgeous!

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Laura March 19, 2011 at 4:37 pm

I used to have a website – but no more! ;) But who knows with inspiration like yours coming through – I just may find the time to start my mommy – business back up!!

Finding this site, reading articles and seeing posts from others who are in the same boat – has so helped to shore up this single mom’s heart. Going through the court battles, etc….it’s nice to read of other’s who are traveling the same journey.

Thank you for your courage in posting your thoughts, for sharing your life on-line so that the rest of us can gain!!

My favorite quote as a single mom: “Courage doesn’t always roar. Sometimes courage is the little voice at the end of the day that says, “I’ll try again tomorrow.” ~ Mary Anne Radmacher-Hershey

Here’s to all the courageous people doing their job!! :D

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Kristi G. at You and Me Kid . net March 21, 2011 at 8:01 pm

You’ll get your bearings again. At least that’s what I tell myself! Hang in there! I am single again after a year and a half. But there’s something I’m likin’ about it…

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Trudi March 22, 2011 at 12:39 am

Glad I ran across your blog. We single mothers need all the “voices” we can get!

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Crystal March 23, 2011 at 7:30 pm

I just wanted to let you know I loved reading this! As single moms, we can all get really stressed out not knowing how to balance everything. Some days are better then others, but at the same time try to remind myself I get to enjoy time with my children and not have to argue with anyone about how I raise them :)

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Nancy Wurtzel March 24, 2011 at 11:14 pm

Those boots are made for walkin…or strutin your stuff! Really, they look beyond yummy…it is raining where I live and I would love a pair of those wonderful boots. Great pics, too.

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E March 25, 2011 at 9:34 pm

I recently found your blog and it has been my one source for comfort and a little support. It’s so great to hear about all the other single moms out there and how we all seem to find a way to press forward. I started my own blog years ago, but now I feel like I have something to write about.

I love your “what-if” about breaking a leg. Well, I broke my ankle in three places. When I had to argue with my husband about showing up to my surgery, I knew I didn’t have a partner and never did. That was my breaking point – literally. Since then, and with a major amount of support from friends, family and co-workers, I have pressed forward. Some days are good, others not so good. I feel like my decision to move forward on my own was the best one I could ever make.

Thank you for writing and your heart-warming stories.

E

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April Queen March 27, 2011 at 3:38 pm

It is not boring at all! I have been a single mom for 3 years and taking care of kids and doing “what you are supposed to” is anything but boring! I think we all just have to take our own time adjusting and getting back out there. I am in no hurry because I am thoroughly enjoying a man-free, drama-free life right now!

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hayford April 12, 2011 at 1:20 pm

I’m single , Accountant in a hotel , Im really interested in you and really admire your beauty. therefore i want to go on date with you.
And i promise i will love you forever, care , respect you and make you happy at all times . please this is my number +233242344881 . and my email is ankomah.nyampong@yahoo.com . I am from GHANA AND I will expect your reply soon. thank you… I love you . bye

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