Dating by its own account can be a nerve wracking ordeal, picking a time and a place, juggling a busy schedule, and of course what to wear. Then throw in finding a sitter and a night where you have no other responsibilities and you might be inclined to just stay home. If you’re a single mom, or dad for that matter, you know how hectic managing your life can be without trying to pencil in time to get to know someone new.
When you’re a single parent, your life tends to be a cycle of wake up, go to work, pick up the little one and prepare for tomorrow, and if you’re like me throw a full schedule of college classes in there. With only 24 hours in the day finding even one to sit down with a date or potential significant other can be a feat that you end up neglecting altogether. Since Ava’s father and I split in 2011 I have been in one serious relationship spanning just over a year and even that amazes me. I’ve gone on plenty of dates and awkward “you just have to meet my friend” set ups but after one or two meet ups over lunch or dinner I usually end up having to cancel future plans because something comes up, mostly because I don’t have a sitter or I’m just swamped with work and school responsibilities. My family helps me tremendously with Ava while I’m at work and at school and some days I’m out of the house from 9am until 9pm so asking them to watch her yet another night so I can go on a date seems a little selfish of me, not to mention after being a passing ship to Ava most nights a week I want to use my weekend to hang out with her. In my mind a date can wait, I just want to be home.
That desire to just want to flop on the couch and watch Disney movies on a Friday night is often met with skepticism. Things like “Don’t you want more kids?” “Don’t you want to get married soon?”, “You’re still single?!” come whizzing past your head at family gatherings or even work events and for the sake of your job, and being polite, you learn and master new ways to avoid or brush off this questions all the while screaming in your head “I DON’T HAVE TIME TO WORRY ABOUT THIS NOW!”. Don’t get me wrong, the women who stuck it out with their partners, whose relationships work, I applaud you and I’m happy you’ve found that so early in life. But for others it didn’t happen in that order, some of us thought love started and ended with a high school sweetheart only to find that a high school romance may not be strong enough to withstand the seasons of life. So when these relationships don’t work we don’t throw pity parties, we throw on our grown up britches and get on with it. We pour ourselves into giving to our kids, to bettering their lives and to make sure they live the life they deserve, after all they didn’t ask to be here.
What it comes down to and truth of the matter is I don’t want to be in a relationship right now, I simply do not have the time to commit to one and I’m not one to half commit or skirt on any aspect of my life. Right now I’m worried about getting my second degree and securing a good job for Ava and I to live comfortably. I want my own life to be on solid ground before I begin looking to share that ground with anyone else. I’m unapologetic when it comes to being consumed with my own life because when I’m ready to share it … I will.