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Thursday, August 30, 2012

A single parent

Oswald's work has been crazy busy and he has had to go work in Alabama for the last two weeks, only coming home on the weekends.

It has been hard not having him here. I could list all the ways that being a single parent day-in and day-out to four kids sucks, but I would rather focus on the things I have learned.

1. Even though Oswald is gone, the kids and I can still have yummy food. I cook to show my family, especially Oswald, how much I love them. But tonight, the kids and I had this yumminess and I'm so glad because they all had seconds!!

2. Time management is key. I need to make sure that I take the time to help each kid with their homework as soon as they get off the bus. If I wait too long, no doubt about it, homework will not get done and we'll be double loaded the next night.

3. Streamline showers. Make sure they get their jammies and underwear out before they get in the shower, that way I am not running all over the house trying to do everything.

4. Have them clean up before they go to bed. Having a clean house when it's "Jennie time" is so important to me. It helps me relax and recharge my brain and spirit for the next day.

5. Make sure to read the scriptures and say my prayers. There is something so very comforting to pray for the strength to make it through another day and then go to bed, wake up and BAM, you have all you need to power through another day with no husband helper.

6. I can do hard things! Last week, 2 of my 4 kids were sick. I had a kid in bed with me every night he was gone. I did not get very much sleep, and the sleep I did get was not that great. But we survived and made it through this week as well as last!

7. Let your friends help. Ask them for help. Don't feel like you're infringing on their space or that you're taking advantage. They love to help (at least I do when I've given the chance)

Now #7 is a very precarious lesson to learn. Don't take advantage of your friends. Don't have them watch your kids every second of every day, but if you need a break for an hour or two, ask them for help. We've all been without a spouse at some point or another and we need to support each other.

As for those of you who are full-time single parents, my heart goes out to you. You have an exhausting job, full of challenges. Know that there are people out there who support you and who are willing to help. Remember this too shall pass and it shall all be for thy profit and learning!

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