Surprise! I'm a single parent

pre-nup alert alert alert alert
October 1, 2011, 2:38 am
Filed under: Uncategorized

Lately I seem to have been running into people (women actually but I’m trying to be gender neutral) who have lost their houses and property because they didn’t have a pre-nup or they didn’t have a very good one.

I’m thinking it might be a good idea to try and hunt some examples out and make them available.

It’s pretty well known that single mothers are among the poorest in society. Women tend to spend time out of the workforce having kids and missing opportunities on the career ladder, women tend to be averse to positions where they might have to boss others around and women often want part time hours to fit in with school and day care. That might be OK when you have a partner and can pool your resources but when the pooling ends…. but that’s another blog.

If you have a  pre-nup and /or you have pre-nup awareness don’t be shy – share with us :-) share the love insurance :-)


August 1, 2011, 6:45 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

A small part of me likes to be sick. I don’t have to do anything. My to do list is about ten thousand miles long most days. When I’m sick it can pretty much just sit there. It is a great way to prioritise.

I did have a boyfriend at the beginning of feeling sick (I think that was Sunday) but half way through being sick I realised he shouldn’t be. So: I’m single and sick.

Being sick is, I suppose, a kind of germ attracting lottery. Kind of like dating. I try and do the right things – wash my hands and eat fruit and veges and get exercise. But I keep attracting cold viruses and before you know it Im flat on my back thanking the god I do not believe in that I had had the foresight to freeze a few meals so I only have to give my kids instructions on how to heat stuff up.

Then there is work. When people ring me at work and tell me they are sick I think ok. I do not think they are faking it.  I do not think they are slack. But when I’m sick I find myself asking me: are you really? And on day two I say to myself: come on I think you are milking it now – get up and have a shower and pretend you are going to work. And then I usually trick me and say: well you’re up and dressed now – how about you just go in to work and you don’t have to try too hard. Just keep on top of things.

So because of the tricking and the not believing I am sick enough to stay home I have to pull a swifty on myself, put myself in a coworkers shoes and ask myself: would I like to have to sit within 5 feet of me today?  And that is my benchmark. And that is why I am home sick today.

you don’t send me flowers anymore
July 27, 2011, 3:44 am
Filed under: Uncategorized

If guys knew just how uplifting, exciting, fascinating flowers were, they would send them all the time. But I don’t think they do. Women know though. The other week I invited a friend around for dinner and she brought me a pot with three tulips in it. They were still buds. I placed the pot in a blue bowl and put the bowl in the center of my dining table.

Oh my goodness every time Ive walked past the table Ive seen those buds maturing. What colour would they be? The outer petals of the tulip is green but as it flowers they turn into the colour that the flower will be. How classy. How magical. How interesting. How beautiful. How dynamic.

Maybe its because women focus on the small indicators of childrens growth and their ever changing beauty that we relate to flowers so much.

The tulips were orange. Not a dull one sort of colour of orange but a flickering of yellows and warm ochre and hints of sexy red. Joyous and bold and brazen and changing every day on my table – lighting it up and enjoying center stage.

A while back I started buying myself flowers every now and again – I don’t buy a big $50 arrangement with lots of paper and plastic and roses that last two days. I buy my flowers at the market and the supermarket. I love daffodils and daisies and something I get with a mass of blue flowers like a hyacinth but not. Theya re not on my list of esential items that I try and stick to. They cost maybe as much as a glossy magazine but I think I get more entertainment from them and more visual delight. Magazines have me thinking about more things Id like to buy and how I need to change me but FLOWERS are about being perfect right now – and when their blooms finish its like a little life you’ve known thats done its thing. You’ve cheered them on and now they can go out into the compost bin and be a different sort of beautiful.

I still love that song that Barbara Streisand sang “You don’t bring me flowers…” such a great number. How fleeting is courtship between lovers sometimes, but we can have flowers whenever we want Barbara.

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!