Surprise! I'm a single parent

the free separation agreement news
July 23, 2011, 2:56 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

My separation agreement continues to go out into the world. Every few days or weeks a person sends an email asking for it. It’s usually a one liner but I can usually sense the tears and trauma. Sometimes the heartbreak and fear is written plainly, like one woman who asked for the agreement and remarked that she was home with a young baby and how could he leave us? I just wanted to say come to my place we’ll make room for you and the baby!

I hope the agreement gave her something. I hope he is helping with the baby.

Sometimes I wonder if the people get back together?

On the odd occasion someone sends back a thank you – which is not expected but is appreciated. It keeps me motivated to check my emails and send out copies promptly.

Recently a woman has written to say thank you AND that she has asked for a word version and she is going to anonymise hers too. And, that having mine saved her a lot of money. Yay!!!!! I’m so pleased. If she sends it to me I will start sending out both or look to combine them in some way.

And this ends the news :-)

Boy friends, girl friends and being my own friend
July 9, 2011, 3:26 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

So when I broke up with my ex I thought to myself that I would probably be spending the rest of my life alone.  In fact that was my thought – will it be ok to be single for the rest of my life?

And the answer was yes. For me it was bad enough. So I ended it.

At first being on my own was scarey and depressing. Not when the kids were around but when they weren’t. It was so important for me to have at least one social thing organised ahead of time before they went to their dad. I had a couple of crushingly lonely weekends to learn that. And then slowly I built up my network of girlfriends – people to play with.  I now have a good set of friends I don’t want to lose contact with.

I have a couple of girl friends who like to go to movies and a couple who like going to new places and taking pictures, I have friends who like dancing and like to come dog walking with me.

I have also become good friends with myself. I like being on my own. Sometimes it worries me how much I like being on my own! I may not tolerate living with another person if that ever comes up again as a real possibility.

Today I have a whole bunch of things on a list to do. I want to get the washing in and sorted, clean the bathroom, get a bunch of things to the dump, prune my apple tree, do some work and Ive also got three people to ring and catch up with. Because if I don’t put it on the list I don’t do it! It isn’t that I don’t care its just I have found I have to make the time.

I was at zumba yesterday and a guy I know showed up for the first time with his new wife. I thought it was so cool that they were doing that together. It’s good to commit to doing things together – often in relationships people end up doing parallel living but friendships that are parallel fade away. You cease to meet in meaningful ways.

joining things
June 11, 2011, 2:52 am
Filed under: Uncategorized

A while ago I posted that I was joining a few things. That is the bonus of shared care – time to do stuff.

I joined zumba in the first term of the year and did an 8 week introductory course. There was me and about 14 other unco-ordinated ladies trying our best to follow our instructor. The introductory course was a great introduction – not so much because of the learner environment but because of the breaks! Zumba is hard yards!

As a sport its good for building strength in your body and building balance and coordination. I also have a theory it might be good for combating the onset of senile dementia – following new steps and learning new moves. I notice I’m better at this in the first half of a session than the second.

Now I have graduated to regular zumba classes. I like to be in the back. I have been zumba-ing twice a week. I’ve noticed I don’t get puffed walking up the stairs at work and can keep a conversation going quite happily. I have also noticed I am getting more toned. But the big thing is that I have found a full on exercise  I enjoy and can fit into my life.


Last term I tried an introduction to Pilates course – also a pretty good experience. Its educated me a bit more about my body and how its working . It is possibly something I could do into old age  whereas Zumba can be pretty hard on the knees!  Its a hard road finding the perfect sport but its nice to be out there trying new things. Advanced Pilates next term!

Dog gone it
June 11, 2011, 2:28 am
Filed under: Uncategorized

Growing up one of the things I learnt was that a pet is for life. They are like kids that way. But … what if they aren’t your kids?

I’m making excuses already. Last week our dog headed out the gate and wound up at the pound. Again. And by our dog I guess I mean my dog. He is legally registered to me, I fed him and walked him and got him his shots and nursed his wounds.

How did we get the dog? Well it went like this:

Him: A house isn’t a home without a dog.

Me: Ive had a dog for years and now Im not tied down by one. I don’t have time for a dog.

Him: Ive heard there are 6 dogs on deathrow down at the pound.

So in the end I went down, me, and picked one. And lucky me it was the start of many return trips picking up the same dog from the pound. Maybe its some sort of cunning fundraising thing they do – train dogs to come back to them and then charge owners to bail them out. Recently it was one bail out too many for me and I called the ex to ask him if he wanted to bail him out instead.

To my surprise and relief the ex agreed to take the dog. I think I would have gone and got him if he hadn’t. Now I have a dog free life. I am planning a weekend away. And the potential of staying over if Im late getting home from a friends. And of doing exercise that doesn’t involve having one arm attached to a leash.

He is still welcome to come over for visits :-)

April 23, 2011, 12:58 am
Filed under: Uncategorized

My youngest has to be told to take a shower. I don’t get it. Doesn’t she like being clean? What I hate about camping and home renovations when the water gets cut off and part of the nightmare of what it must be like to live in Christchurch is the horror of NO SHOWER. But I have to tell her over and over GO AND HAVE A SHOWER!

I suppose when she is double digits she will suddenly become a person who uses up more hot water than I would like.

Part of the reason she doesn’t like showering is the lack of electronic devices in the bathroom. She just doesn’t like lack of input. I kind of understand. I’m beginning to thing I have some sort of email, facebook, twitter,, adult attention deficit disorder myself. Partly she’s just happy in her own smellyness. Somewhere along the way we seem not to have shamed her into having a horror of the possibility she might be wiffy.  Too much positive self image! Yikes.

Oh well the good thing is that this one thing we argue about (and its is an argument I still win). I’m still the Mummy.

Tomorrow its Easter Sunday and it’s our tradition to take rolly eggs out to a nearby hill and bowl them downwards. Then we race after them. Its so nice to have traditions and rituals. Its good to have fun things we do each year. A new thing we are thinking about doing is going to the ANZAC dawn service in town. It’s just the dawn part we are doubtful about. I’m going to get my grandfathers medals out and talk about them tomorrow. I hope you are enjoying your own Easter break.

no regrets
April 2, 2011, 12:46 am
Filed under: Uncategorized

Occasionally my exhusband gives me grief. When this happens I often find myself thinking how great it is I am not with him anymore. The frustrations today are nothing new – they were what I used to accept. I used to try being nicer and being good and being understanding and being loving and being patient and accepting that maybe I was a nag and all the other things he liked to suggest I was. Yup I’m flawed, yup yup yup.

Is he a bastard? I don’t know. For some reason my husband was like a lot of men who once he had wooed and won he didn’t have much idea how to love. And maybe the same can be said for me.

Sometimes however I realise that I have friends who are married to bastards. Men who practice psychological sabotage, men who shove, men who sulk and men who shout.

I know its hard to get out. But the grass is soooo much greener over here. If I had known how much better it was going to be I would have gotten out years ago. I lost so much of myself in my marriage. It sounds cliche but that’s what happened. Now I feel like I’m blossoming and I would so dearly like to see that happen for others.


yeah yeah year
December 30, 2010, 9:13 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

It’s the end of another year. Some people make resolutions. The way I figure it, even if my resolutions don’t last that long they will still be good for me while I am still committed to them. So my resolutions are these:

1. Try different ways to encourage my daughter to get organised about her homework.

2. Try different ways to get my other daughter moving more.

2. Try and get myself moving (yes they are both number 2s) possibly at the same time

3.Look around for a different job (if I’m working until I’m 70 something I should try a different career)

3. Get my own business going (yup thats 3rd equal)

4. Spend plenty of time playing and laughing with my kids.

That’s me!

battle of the brat
May 20, 2010, 12:57 am
Filed under: Uncategorized

Sometimes it feels like it would be much easier to give in than battle. Tonight I asked my youngest to go have a shower. One of my girls is religious about a nightly shower – the other would go weeks or months without one if she could get away with it. I’m hoping hormones and peer pressure will eventually reduce my policing role but right now Im the mean mummy who demands water torture.

I started the battle with an ultimatum that I’d count to three IF. Something I learnt years ago is that its no good threatening to count to 20 because its just too long and to make sure my threats are carried out – so threaten something I feel ok about carrying out (oh and that child protection would be ok with too!). So tonight it was I’m going to count to 3 and if you aren’t heading to the shower Im taking your clothes off myself. I only said one and she was off like a rocket.

All wasn’t sorted however I could tell by the banging that there was plenty of foot stomping and little cleansing going on in the bathroom. So I ended up weilding the shampoo bottle but she was in the room and wet and that was a much easier proposition.

knowing you knowing me
May 6, 2010, 12:25 am
Filed under: Uncategorized

I think you meet yourself through your children. My first awareness of this was understanding the guises we develop. My babies were born wearing raw unhidden emotion, they feel and they yell or laugh and then they learn to keep those feelings to themselves – we encourage it, ignoring tantrums, patiently rehearsing the words they must say to disguise their contempt of a disappointing birthday present, telling them to stop that delightful squeaking because it is too irritating for me.

Once clothed in emotional control it can be hard to be naked even to ourselves. I have found the way back to me through knowing my kids, watching them act differently to the way I would – not wrong just different, and learning to see and accept that difference.

April 9, 2010, 1:59 am
Filed under: Uncategorized

I said to my kid Why don’t you make a flyer and offer to look after some cats over Easter? No she said. I don’t need any money. It was a bit disturbing. I would rather she said she couldn’t be bothered. That’s something I could understand, as she is now a full blown slothful teen. But: not needing money? Heck I was almost tempted to leaflet the neighborhood myself as at $5 per day per cat at 10 cats per day over 4 days…. Come to think of it – why didn’t I leaflet the neighborhood?

The sloth isn’t keen on clothes, technology or anything much other than books and for this she has an endless supply courtesay of the library. When she has money she usually spends it on others – she is generous.

But I am wanting her to be entrepreneurial – I can’t even spell it. I am wanting this for her because I am not. I am good at 9-5 working but this has meant I’m 44 with a mortgage that I’ll pay off, need to do work on the house and finally I will hopefully put a bit on one side for retirement. I’d like a little more financial freedom for my kids. Therefore I want them to have better financial literacy than I’ve had.

Luckily there is hope – youngest child was very excited about the cat care idea and whipped up a poster. Unfortunately at 8 years old I thought she might be a little young to be cat care credible…