with Karli Larson
The transition from stay-at-home mom to divorced-and-working-full-time mom can be challenging, and sometimes very lonely. Throw in a few cats, an ancient dog and one very brave boyfriend, and life gets downright crazy. Join me as I talk through my thoughts and struggles, my miscalculations and my triumphs. We're in this together, you and I.
When I'm not writing here you can find me over at work on the TisBest Philanthropy blog.
Several weeks ago, my younger brother invited me on a snowboarding weekend with some of his friends. The condo charges were extremely reasonable and his crew of buddies was a group I’d known and liked for years.
“Money’s tight,”I said, frowning,”And what about Nolan?”
I’ve nailed down a bit of a schedule with my ex: he has our son Wednesday and Friday nights and for a bit of Sunday afternoon. But due to his sports schedule, he won’t commit to full weekends once a month anymore and so - I haven’t had a weekend away in months. The Friday nights are fantastic and so I don’t want to complain - but really, to truly decompress: to empty my brain and re-open my relaxation valves, two full days of pure de-mommification are required.
“Mom and Dad will help with Nolan,” my brother replied,”You gotta come. When’s the last time we went riding? When’s the last time you took a snowboarding trip? 2004?”
It was 2004, yes. I remember because I had been three months pregnant with my son. That was five years ago. Five years too long.
I decided to go on the trip, fandangling with my parents and re-arranging and stressing and second guessing myself.
“What if I just paid you the hundred and thirty four bucks?” I asked my brother.
“Are you going to jam?” he sounded disgusted,”Really?”
I had been thinking about it. And quietly decided against it once again, because there was a knowing resignation in his voice and he is my little brother and therefore can’t ever be right when I am.
The snowboard weekend was what my soul had been thirsty for.
It was a fireplace and melted brie and laughter so robust it provoked helpless tears. It meant streaking down a mountain on a plank, at the speed of light, with my heart in my mouth and my soul flying over the mountains in the distance. It meant zig-zagging through trees with three athletic men: a feeling of youth, strength, and competence. I’m not just a Mom, I’m not just a Career: I am still a young woman with soul nurturing to do and man, I suddenly realized it.
I am working for Nolan and me, yes. I am working for our house and for the sweet potato souffle we ate for dinner, I am working for his clothes and swim lessons and a helmet for his bicycle. But I am also working for me, for delights besides that of Motherhood and career satisfaction. I need to remember that more often.
What about you? Besides money, besides the basics - what do you work for?
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