Single parenting

Becoming a single parent has been great and challenging. For starters its not more work because my ex worked away 90% of the time anyway. In fact i actually have more time to myself because he takes our son every second weekend. The hard part is finding purpose in my day. I now work full time and am finding i dont have anything to focus my energy on. I get home, clean, put Rue to bed then am at a loss as to what to do. Even on my weekends off, i usually run errands like go to the shops or the library, things its harder to do with a 4yr old in tow. But then im bored.

Another down side it that i feel more disconnected from my son because the time we do have at home im spending trying to chill or cleaning. I just have no idea what to do with him. Any activity i set up im just watching him do it and really i could easily be doing something else while he happily plays.
People have suggested joining a group, getting out there, but i have no idea how they expect me to actually do that while working full time then having no babysitter in the evenings so i have to be home. They say oh but you get a whole weekend off do something then. Well i don't know many groups who meet fortnightly and most of the activities i want to do are during the week. Even then if i do go out on the weekend I'm then rushed during the week trying to get chores done. Its just a no win at the moment. Im finding that im spending huge amounts of money trying to occupy myself and on food so i don't have to cook for one person (and a child who will only eat chicken nuggets).

I do have a multitude of hobbies but mostly when i get one out i find a mountain of cleaning that needs to be done and i feel guilty for crafting instead of cleaning. I know people say oh but you need time for you too, sure, if you have someone else to help you clean but when its just me it piles up faster than you can imagine and i imagine child services knocking down my door. Coupled with a small house and a lack of storage its just everywhere. It doesn't help that my ex's things are still here filling the garage. At the risk of spoiling the happy arrangement we currently have (all the furniture is his so im saving money by offering to 'look after it' until he gets a place) i haven't bugged him about it but frankly i feel like a storage locker.

Dropping to one income may seem like a stress also but not for the reason you may think. I have enough money, im not struggling, but i always have that knowledge that if something goes wrong its just my income and savings that will get me through it. That's a big burden especially when you are in debt already (im working on that.) Strangely these are things that never occur to those who aren't single parents. All they understand is that 'yeah its hard' but they don't really get why.

So here is my current list which i think would resonate with most single parents:

  • Save money
  • Refurnish house without spending money
  • Pay off debt
  • Clean house to get down time
  • Find something to do in down time that doesn't involve spending money
  • Get in shape, no time or money for gym so find large can of beans to use as weights
  • Spend quality time with 4yr old
  • Clean up after quality time with 4yr old
  • Decide if you can drink a glass of wine or if it will make you an alcoholic drinking alone?
  • Hide the 10 boxes of takeout you got this week when dad comes to pick up child

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