Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Ch-ch-ch-ch-Changes

I still don't know what I was waiting for
And my time was running wild
A million dead-end streets
Every time I thought I'd got it made
It seemed the taste was not so sweet
So I turned myself to face me
But I've never caught a glimpse
Of how the others must see the faker
I'm much too fast to take that test.

Changes - David Bowie

It's been five (5!) years this month since Dexy's daddy and I, you know, like, made her. Five years of ups and downs as a couple (five years of ups and downs as a woman for that matter). But *GASP!* at the end of this month, we'll not only be living in the same city/state for the first time ever, but in the same house.

Wow.

There are myriad reasons why this is a big damn deal. Some of which are... how will this pan out for a 43+ year old broad like me, who has never actually lived with a man (other than college roommates) and how will this pan out for our daughter? He's been married before. I've never even been proposed to. How do I share this home I've spent the last 2 years creating alone, in a city I really love, but that he's not necessarily 100% sold on? How will our work schedules mesh? How will we navigate co-parenting? How will we move in rhythm with each other, on a day-to-day basis, when we've gotten used to seeing each other for only 2-3 days once a month?

One of the biggest questions though is... how will I now define myself? 

Despite my being with J for most of these past five years, we've never actually lived in the same city/state, so I've always identified myself as a single mom. There are myriad reasons for that too, but I'm not going to discuss them here.

In any case, the reality of it was, for me, that I was doing the parenting thing by myself. I didn't have any help from family members (my parents were dead before Dexy was two) and very little help from friends. I've been solely responsible for her daily care; housing, school tuition, clothes, food, diapers, toys, books, bathing, soothing, entertainment, travel, love, discipline, etc.

By saying that, in no way do I mean to diminish J's role as a dad. He's been absolutely great with her. And they cuckoo crazy LOVE each other, which is awesome. The bigger issue here is me. I've not always been the best at letting him just be himself. I've often been judgmental, resentful, petty, a nag, and even a downright bitch. Why? Because I felt entitled to it. Because I felt like I was doing all the hard work, while he got to be the awesome, cool, lovable, visiting dad.

But all that's about to change. I don't get to be the long suffering single mom anymore. I get to be one half of a parenting partnership. And one half of a committed relationship. In the same state. Same town. Same house.

I'm scared to death. But I'm excited too. Because, what if this is going to actually turn out great? What if the OLD definition was only an illusion, and this NEW and EVOLVING definition is the truth? What if this will be an amazing next chapter in ALL our lives? What if this is just the beginning of a life I've always wanted? What if I have the choice, starting right now, to just be happy?

That wouldn't be so bad, right?

Nope. It sure wouldn't.

14 comments:

carrie said...

Aaaaah. Time to sit back and enjoy the ride your life is about to provide for you.

And get a little alone time to boot now that there will be 2 parents "on deck."

Enjoy.

You deserve happiness. :)

angie_seattle said...

It's gonna be great! Ok, maybe not great ALL the time. But when it's not great you can retreat to your corners for some alone time. Or go by yourself for coffee. And take turns with the hard stuff. And share the good stuff too. Make all those "remember when Dexy did that ..." moments to share. More than okay to be excited!

Sybil said...

Oh my gosh that is such great news! I am really, really happy for all of you. It will be very hard work, but you can definitely make it work.

Cheryl said...

Thanks ladies. I'm sure it'll be great. And funnily enough, I feel excited about The WORK. :-)

Dayngr | Dayngrous Discourse said...

I wish you the best. My advice to you is take lots of deep breaths. More importantly, if you disagree, don't get into a big blowout in front of your little one.

Brandon said...

Wow, excellent!

Al_Pal said...

Oh, exciting! Wow, what a big adventure for you all! Best Wishes with that, and keep breathing, for sure. ;)

I came by b/c I tried to DM you & realized you aren't following--I started to follow you fairly recently, since my sis, VDog, moved to your area. Hope you'll follow so we can talk on twitter! I'm @Al_Pal

Thanks!

Nancy said...

So happy for you Cheryl! Hoping you take the advice I've seen here, take a deep breath and enjoy - and call me for a quick get away when you need (now you'll be able to do that:) )!
) PS Thanks for the support, appreciate you!

max said...

Truly outstanding news. You are by far one of the strongest single parents I know. You are taking on alot for the right reasons bringing Dexy a fuller parenting world and you much needed relief to create.

Annette said...

Wowzers woman! Wishing you the best!

It's not going to be easy. I'll be honest, it's not about the long-suffering "single mom", the hardest part (for me) was giving up even a little bit of control of how things should be done, cuz "mama knows best".

Hoping it all works out for all three of you.

Cheryl said...

I so appreciate all your comments and encouragement! You have NO idea! :-)

max said...

Truly outstanding news. You are by far one of the strongest single parents I know. You are taking on alot for the right reasons bringing Dexy a fuller parenting world and you much needed relief to create.

Nancy said...

So happy for you Cheryl! Hoping you take the advice I've seen here, take a deep breath and enjoy - and call me for a quick get away when you need (now you'll be able to do that:) )!
) PS Thanks for the support, appreciate you!

Dayngr | Dayngrous Discourse said...

I wish you the best. My advice to you is take lots of deep breaths. More importantly, if you disagree, don't get into a big blowout in front of your little one.