November 14, 2013

The View From Here: Cancelled

The View this week is from Roxanne of Unintentionally Brilliant.
I dig the name of her blog.

Roxanne is a single mom to a little boy, living near my old stomping grounds (Lake Tahoe)
in Reno, Nevada. Also, she is participating in NaNoWriMo this month!

Roxanne caught my attention with a post titled
"I am intolerant of your intolerance."
In fact, she got a lot of attention with that one!
Go give it a read after this one here....


Right now my view includes bare branches, crunchy orange leaves, and a chill in the air that means I’d have to bundle up just to sit on my porch to write.

I have my feet propped up on the coffee table, my toes freshly painted bright red. The television is off so the only sound, besides the clicking of keys on the laptop, is the refrigerator’s low hum and the occasional rustling of leaves from outside.

Today I was supposed to have a lunch date.

I made plans last night for my son to go to my friend’s house at noon so I could meet this guy for lunch. We met online and this would be our first face-to-face meeting. We were going to do lunch, maybe catch a movie, and get to know each other.

It’s not all that easy for me to ask my friends to watch my son so I can go on dates. I always feel like I’m doing it too often, asking too much, even if it’s only once or twice a month. I feel guilty for giving up time I should be spending with my son. As a single parent with a basically-absent ex-husband, you can imagine that most of my non-work time is spent with my son. I’m obviously not neglecting him, but that twinge of guilt is still always there.

I dropped off my son at my friend’s house. I stayed and chatted for a while, happy to see our sons playing together right away and the smile on my son’s face told me that he wasn’t feeling neglected. He was happy to be with friends.

So why am I sitting on my couch writing and enjoying this lovely autumn day?

My lunch date cancelled. So now I’m here with a couple hours to myself. I have a guest post to write (this one!), and two posts due for other sites I write for (Write on Edge and World Moms Blog, if you’re interested). As I sit here typing away, occasionally distracted by a woman walking her dog by my apartment or the college kids whooping as they jump into a beat-up Chevy and peel away, I can’t help but feel totally content that my date cancelled.

I am an introvert. I crave time to myself, time away from others. I have fun with my friends and family, and I enjoy my time with them. But when I need to recharge my batteries, I do it best when I’m on my own. I enjoy solitude.

Unfortunately, I don’t always feel comfortable asking for that solitude. I feel judged if I ask for a friend to watch my son unless it’s for a really good reason, like having to work on the weekend. I feel like I am letting him down because I need time away from him. Maybe it’s all in my head. It probably is.

I’m going to finish up this post and go pick up my son. Maybe I’ll hang out with our friends for a while and enjoy their company. Maybe we’ll all have dinner together.

Then I’ll return home, with my son, and snuggle with him while watching a movie or an episode of Doctor Who (our most recent shared obsession). And I’ll feel at ease because I’ve had this alone time to recharge. And maybe I won’t feel quite so guilty asking for help next time to get the time alone that I require for my sanity.

You know, everyone, not just moms, need time to themselves. We just do.
But I bet a single mom especially needs it.

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