There are so many things wrong with that title. At least, according to society norms anyway. Yes, I’m single. Yes, I’m a mom. And sadly, YES, I am crazy. Although the crazy came way before the being a single mom. And to be completely truthful, I’ve never been married. Even more truthful, I feel blessed that I have never been married. The main reason is because never being married means I haven’t had to go through the emotional, devastating trauma that divorces can be. Let’s move on, shall we?
While raising my daughter I’ve been in 3 long term relationships. The first lasted about 2.5 years, the 2nd 5 years and the 3rd 3.5 years (give or take). None of these relationships were with my daughter’s father. There are many reasons why a) I didn’t stay with him, b) I didn’t want anything to do with him and c) to this day have never seen or spoken to him again. Which I will be kind enough not to go into here. I also want to state that I have never, not once, badmouthed him to my daughter. For the most part, we never really spoke of him. I did tell her when she turns 18 she can have his name and go looking for him if she wishes.
I’m currently single and happily so. After being everything from lied to, cheated on, the other woman (one time unknowingly to me until she started sending death threats), told more than once that no matter how long we’re together or whether or not we marry that I’ll never be cared for when they die if they happen to die first (wow, that made me love him so much more!) and manipulated into always believing I was a bad mother, a bad person and didn’t care about anyone but myself I decided it was time to stop the madness.
Don’t think that I went from one relationship to another, because I didn’t. There was anywhere from 1.5 to 2.5 or more years between relationships. I’m very picky about who I choose to share any part of my life with let alone be in a relationship with. Yes, I write a blog and share tidbits with you but it doesn’t even breach the crust of the thoughts that run through my head. There are as many facets to me as there are to gems.
Although, if you were to ask me a question I would give you the answer honestly in the best manner which it would be received. If you were being serious and needed a real answer, I’d answer you straight-forward. If we were joking around, having fun and the question was more in a comedic manner I would most likely answer you sarcastically. If you’ve been reading here for awhile you know that I can be both logical and creative. I believe in magic and science. Most people either don’t understand me or understand me so completely that it’s a little freaky. Sometimes it’s also a little scary to be able to look at an illusion and see both versions.
While I didn’t enter into motherhood by my choice I fully excepted what came along with it. Responsibility for another life. I needed to take this little baby girl and turn her into a productive member of a society I didn’t always agree with. For the most part I think I have fulfilled most of the obligation. She’s not 18 yet, but will be in just over a year. She’s smart, creative and can debate your pants off about any topic you choose regardless as to which side she’s debating.
While I didn’t sacrifice everything in my life for this child I did put a lot of it on hold. There are still a lot of things I want to do with my life. I don’t go out drinking every night/weekend/whatever (and certainly don’t plan to in the future either). I don’t spend my paycheck without paying bills and making sure there is food on the table, or I make sure there is food on the table before paying the bills. I go to work every single day unless I can’t move and since being hired in haven’t missed a day. I have made up all time missed taking my daughter to the doctor during the lactose-intolerance answer treasure hunt. I don’t bring strange guys home after a night out. Period.
I did have rules and structures in my house, some of them may sound unacceptable to you such as: “If you don’t do the dishes, you can’t go outside and play and I won’t cook dinner when I get home.” That’s right. If my daughter, at the age of 9, didn’t do dishes she wasn’t allowed to go out and play. On top of that she’d have to eat leftovers from previous meals instead of getting something new. Eventually she benefitted from knowing that it was best to do the dishes.
Now she does her own laundry. We do our best to share the rest of the chores but with her in high school (and having shit loads of homework) and me at work all day (and usually exhausted when I get home) we tend to do as little as possible to get by and make up for it on the weekends. Sometimes I’ll ask her to do a load of dishes when she gets home. Instead she’ll take a nap and not wake up until a couple of hours after I get home and have thrown in the load of dishes. Sometimes I still don’t make dinner when she does this and it ticks her off. She may not be an adult but she sure isn’t a child any longer and is more than capable of either doing dishes when she gets home so that I can make dinner when I get home or she can take a nap and I’ll do dishes which then means she either makes dinner, fends for herself or starves. Sometimes this works, sometimes it fails and we both get irritated. It happens. We are always going to have differences and we are always going to irritate each other. We are family, it’s what we do best.
I say I’m crazy, but I’m not clinically insane. I’m not depressed. I don’t take any of the hundreds of medications out there prescribed or unprescribed. I have control over myself most ( 99.4%) of the time. The last time I went Chernobyl on anyone I moved back from California to Ohio. Sometimes, less than once in a blue moon (maybe twice a decade) I wonder if I need therapy because of all the things I’m not doing. Out of all the parents of my daughter’s friends, I am the responsible one. I’m the one that ends up taking kids home because their parents are sleeping or stuck in Cleveland. I’m the one they ask the awkward questions to because their parents would blow a gasket. My house is the one they come to because they are tired of being yelled at or told to do stupid things and then do them again but differently. I’m not sure if single mothers out there are crazy… but I know a hell of a lot of parents in general that are definitely not anywhere near as stable as I am.