I know that in the grand scheme of things, when it comes to this whole divorced mom thing, I’ve got it pretty good.
My ex and I don’t always get along, it’s true. We sometimes clash when it comes to time negotiations with the girls. Our 50/50 custody arrangements means that there’s lots of back-and-forth for the girls between our two houses. More than I’d like, a lot of times.
I forget, sometimes, though, that this arrangement, pain in the ass that it may be sometimes, is actually beneficial in a lot of ways. For my girls, this means that no matter which parent they’re with, the other parent is always easily accessible. We face time with them on our “opposite” weekends. We drop off items that they’ve forgotten at the other person’s house if they need them right away. We’ve dropped by for hugs and kisses if the girls aren’t feeling well, or if they need a little extra affection from the absent parent.
When it comes to Christmas (and all holidays, really), my ex and I always split the day. Our tradition is that the girls spend Christmas Eve and Christmas morning at my house. Late morning they go to his house, and spend the rest of Christmas Day and Boxing day with him. It’s a good arrangement that has always worked for us. Our girls get two Christmas mornings, and they get to spend time with both of their parents. For my ex and I, it means that we always get to spend some part of Christmas with our girls.
Thinking about our arrangements, despite the fact that they can be a pain in the ass sometimes, makes me feel pretty fortunate. The holidays can be tough for divorced parents. CBG won’t be with either of his children on Christmas Day. We’ll be picking up Ankle Biter for a few days on the 27th, and Rugrat won’t be around again until sometime in 2014. I see other single or divorced parents on my Facebook timeline who are not able to be with their children on Christmas, and how lonely this leaves them feeling. And while it sucks to have to drop the girls off with their dad late on Christmas morning when all I’d like to do is snuggle them close and hang out in our jammies all day, I remind myself that I’ve been able to actually see them on Christmas day, unlike many other parents.
And then I feel pretty damned fortunate.
Life for divorced/single families isn’t easy. It is full of challenges and compromise.It requires sacrifice and understanding, and most of all, being able to count one’s blessings, rather than focusing on the negatives.
For all my bloggy friends, but in particular my single mom and divorced family friends, I wish you all the best this holiday season. I hope that Christmas 2013 is full of laughter, fun, and happy memories for you and your families.