Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Mrs. Mom without Mr. Dad


That's what time she wakes up each Monday through Friday morning.

Mrs. Mom has things to do. Things to get done before she must head off for a days work in the classroom.

She hears the gentle bell tower sound of her tucked under the pillow iPhone notifying her to rise and shine. She doesn't. Rise. Not yet. "9 more minutes," she begs herself. She taps the snooze button.

She doesn't sleep. Just preps her mind that it is time to start another day. A day of seemingly non-stop busyness. 9 minutes later the bell tower rings. Quietly. Again. She slides her fingertip across the bar to turn off the alarm. Time to get moving.

First thing every morning, Mrs. Mom reads the text from Mr. Dad. A greeting of some sort. "Have a good day babe... love u. Peace n love." She responds in kind, telling him to also have a nice day and that she, too, loves him.

Mrs. Mom lumbers out of bed. Walks straight to the bathroom.

Not every morning is a shower morning but this one is.

Fresh and clean, she walks with more energy into the kitchen.  

Meow. The kittens greet her.

Cup of tea. Couch. TV. That's her ritual. She gives herself half an hour to relax. To get her mind set to the day ahead.

Before she heads back into the bathroom to dry her hair, straighten it, and make up her face she decides to make a healthy heart portion of oatmeal to add to her morning. A satisfied feel full kind of morning.

Hum. The just for oatmeal pot is in the sink. Dirty. With someone's sitting in water uneaten oats. Sigh.
Mrs. Mom really wants her oatmeal; but rather than just washing the little red pot, she first empties the dishwasher, then fills it up again with the left-behind dishes in the sink.

As she is rinsing the gunk off the dishes she begins to think about Mr. Dad.

Not too long ago, when he was out of work, he took on the role of the stay-at-home parent. The house was always tidy. Dishes cleaned and put away. Clothes washed. Ironed. Folded. Returned to the rightful owners. During those early mornings he shared couch space and a cup of coffee with her. Soon after Mrs. Mom left for work, Youngest Son was dropped off and later picked up from school. By Mr. Dad. Homework was completed before anything else was enjoyed. When she walked into the house after a day at work, he had dinner cooking. For the family. A regular family gathering. A mom. A dad. Two boys. One girl.

Dishes done. Oatmeal simmering. Her thoughts now return to the present.

Mrs. Mom returns to the bathroom. Makes herself presentable for the day. As simply as possible, yet enough to show she cares.

Bed straightened. Strewn shoes returned to their place. Clothes not worn shoved back into drawers.

Back to the now clean kitchen.

Lunches made. For her. For Youngest Son. She wakes him while Older Boy and Girl sleep in their respective bedrooms.

Mrs. Mom sets out his cup of tea, to start his day on a soothing note.

She opens the front door. "Bye. Have a good day," she tells Youngest Son. "Bye," he returns. Out she goes. Door locked.

Before returning home, she stops at the gym for 30 minutes of cardio. She needs it. 

Afterwards, at home she encounters a sink full of dishes. Dishes piled there after she spent her morning cleaning up. Morsels of food on the counters. Papers piled on the kitchen table. Backpack thrown against a wall.

Mrs. Mom has no time to do anything about the mess. She needs to shower. Then she needs to take Youngest Son to soccer practice. Sit and watch him. Be involved in his life. Be there for him.

Back home, she starts dinner.

Older Boy and Girl are out. Somewhere. Work. School. With friends. With her boyfriend.

She knows if Mr. Dad were here, things would be much different. They would work as a team. Keep things organized. Dinner would be on the table, surrounded by a family.

As it stands, Mrs. Mom is learning how to behave like a single parent. Doing it all.


  1. Is there no way you can move too?
    I know who wants to move to Arkansas but you'd all be together.
    It could prove a great adventure.

  2. hi peg... right now i spent the past summer there, relaxing.. with our youngest boy...
    it was a great boost...
    by no means am i complaining about our situation... it is what it is...
    moving there isn't something on the forefront of our minds...
    we are okay with how things are for the time being..
    if anything, my husband has it harder than the kids and i do... being in a new place, alone...

    thanks for your concern...