Today I answered a post on Facebook that asked:
Single unschooling parents: How do you make it work? Practicalities: How do you make a living? Do you work out of the house or in? Do your kids stay with someone else part-time? Do the children’s other parent contribute money, time, etc.?
By the time I had finished writing it, I realized that I really wanted it up here so that it might be a reference point for me and perhaps help others on the same path of being a single parent and unschooling, unjobbing and simply carving out a new way to be in the world:
Here is my response:
for me, it’s:
*great friend support networks and remembering to ASK them before it’s urgent
*working from home (online businesses for me), later at night, or first thing in the morning when my kids are asleep or want to watch TV, or when they’re doing their own thing here and there during the day
*not making it work for stretches at a time and then swinging back the other way and just moving through those stages in between with as much grace as I can
*finding the small moments when they’re doing their own thing to catch my breath, chat to a friend or meditate, but not in the ways that I used to need things to be, to be able to recharge in smaller time frames, with more gratitude for what I do get and no longer focused on what I used to have time-wise. I’ve had to let go of reading, esp novels, for a while, but I expect I’ll be able to find a way to fit in again at some point, now I load everything I need to inspire me onto an ipod so that I can multitask.
*realising that some of the things I think I ‘should’ be doing based on some of the awesome blogs I see, may not be what my family needs to feel connected and fulfilled and that what we do will get better and better as long as I keep working at it
*starting and ending every day with deep connection, so that the days where it doesn’t work that well in between seem to be cushioned, emotionally and spiritually
That’s how I do it anyway. I’m with my children pretty much every moment except for 6 hours out of every week when their dad takes them out; that regular arrangement is fairly new and certainly welcome.. It’s almost been a year. At first I barely managed, but now I’m more in the groove and have found ways to nurture myself with what I have, when I can. Mindset changed everything for me. Mine are 3 and 5 and they love doing stuff together, which helps too.
Oh yeah .. and I have much untidier house now. [shrugs] That’s never been my favourite, but it’s no longer a bugbear in the greater scheme of things.
And it goes without saying that I’ve not managed to even conceive of dating for now .. and somehow that doesn’t seem a problem to me, even though I am the archetypal Libran relationship/partnership seeker.
Right now, empowering myself and others daily, being the best mama I can be at any given moment and building a successful business online and offline that will create the future that we talk about as a family when we do our visioning, takes up every waking moment of my life.
And what a rich life we’ll have to share with someone else at some point
photo credit: alles-schlumpf