Single Parent Tango
If there’s one thing I’ve learned from being a parent, it’s this — Parenting is a tough job. Everyone tells you this when you prepare to have a child, but you don’t truly understand just how tough it is until you’ve actually walked in the parenting shoes.
This goes doubly-so for single parents. When there’s two parents you can tag-team away some of the difficulty — “OK this time I’ll clean up the puke if you do it next time”. With two parents you can catch a break once in awhile, which does wonders for personal sanity. Just like a tango, parenthood is a dance that works better with two people.
With single parents, there are no breaks. It’s just one parent, ‘on’ all the time, day-and-night. (Other than very expensive daycare, or babysitters) It’s an absolute wonder to me how single parents manage it.
Well, I’m going to find out! For the next week, I’m will be playing the role of a “single” parent. No — I’m not getting a divorce. Mrs. Tako and I are happily married. No problems there. She’s just going to be “tapping-out” to go on a week-long business trip.
Which means, I’m going to be a single parent for all of next week. My work-load will be effectively doubled — making dinners, cleaning-up the inevitable messes, fixing ouchies, packing lunches, doing laundry, and everything else that’s part of being a parent. I’m going to be doing it all.
Honestly, I’m a little bit nervous. Even though I’ve taken care of the kiddos for years, I’ve never had to do it 100% on my own for more than a day or two at a time. Can I maintain my sanity?
That’s a question still open for debate.
So I’ve decided to just “ignore” the blog for next week. I’m going to focus on just being a good “single” parent. There will be no new blog posts or updates. Probably no Twitter updates either. Hell, I probably won’t even check my email next week.
Mr. Tako is dropping off the grid, so to speak. I’m going to try to be 100% focused on taking care kids, and being a good dad. I’ll be making sure they eat something that resembles food, brush their teeth, wear mostly clean clothing, and get to school on-time. (Yes, I like to keep my standards high)
Hopefully I’ll manage. No doubt I’ll be praying for Mrs. Tako’s safe return.
Wish me luck everybody!
29 thoughts on “Single Parent Tango”
There was a single mom who worked full time running her own cosmetic center – making bank – while homeschooling her daughters after work. I briefly chatted to one daughter and as she was telling me about her homeschool experience she wrinkled her face and said, “Well…wait, actually I don’t know how my mom did it but she did.” Darn, I would have loved an in-depth analysis on how!
I think you will be fine 😀 although based on experience, one of the kids will try to jump off a table playing ninja and twist a leg or something like that that will get you in trouble. It seems to happen whenever the father takes over. It’s like the kids almost know and plan it. Watch them close!
I’ll do my best Lily! Those ninjas are pretty tricky! 🙂
At least take pictures of your food that you post upon your return! Will miss the blog. Take care.
I’ll see what I can do! It might be leftovers and microwave food all week! 😉
We always have fun during our “bachelor nights” / “bachelor weeks” – we may play things just a little looser than when mom is in town, but somehow everything holds together until she gets home. If you can pick a few things that you’ll do differently (but not real concessions) when she’s out of town, it’ll distract and make the time seem special. Maybe this is the week to put up the tent in the den 🙂
Good luck and it’ll be fun to hear the stories from the trenches next week!
Good idea Paul! I like the thought of having special “while mom’s away” activities! 🙂
Best of luck, Mr.Tako! You can do it! From your parenting articles, it seems like you got it covered. I have a feeling you’re going to have some fun stories to tell when you come back. Keep the parenting stories coming. I have lots to learn from you 🙂
Thanks FIRECracker! Your kind words of encouragement are exactly what I needed! 🙂
Hi Mr. Tako,
I wish you luck but think you will do just fine even without the luck. Let us know how the week goes when you are back and wishing Mrs. Tako a safe and successful trip. I’m sure she will make it up to you when she is back!
Haha! We’ll see. It’s going to be a pretty crazy schedule for her. I think she’ll be pretty exhausted when she returns.
It was always better before they could talk, the little angels couldn’t rat on me. Or when they are older and can be bribed. Yours are in the dangerous tween years where they will recount all your rookie mistakes in exquisite detail, I’m sorry Mr. T, but there is little hope they’ll give you a good report to mom. You are about to get hosed.
You might be right Steveark! Wish me luck! 😉
I’ve been in this situation several times, lean on friends…ask for playdates after school, invite yourself to close friend’s houses for dinner or meet in the park for a picnic dinner to make clean up easier. Run them ragged so they can’t wait to go to bed when you get home!! Good luck 🙂
PS …and suggest they make welcome home signs for when Mrs Tako returns, she will love it!!
Great idea with the welcome home signs! We’ll definitely do that! 😀
Oh my goodness have fun! It sounds like an adventure, plan lots of things, and I am making the parental sin of allowing miracle toddler to eat in front of Peppa Pig and paw patrol, I said I never would, but it is a good sanity booster
Thanks Tigermom! Good luck to you too!
Good luck! You got this! It’s definitely more challenging when the kids are little like yours. Wishing you lots of patience, good weather for playing outside, and tired kids! 🙂
Thanks Laurie! The weather was pretty nice this afternoon, so they hosed each other down and poured buckets of water on each other. Good fun for the little goobers. 😉
One thing is for sure: you will sleep well all next week. Best wishes!
Indeed! Thanks Dan!
You’re going to be great! At least you get to send them to school a bit
I anticipate some early (Daddy) bedtimed
Oh yes, I’m already feeling the extra tiredness on Day 1!
Mrs. RB40 is also going out of town for a few days next week. We’ll be just fine. Our son is a bit older than your kids. The only difficult thing will be getting him away from the tablet occasionally.
Haha! Seems like you have a built in baby-sitter there with the tablet. 😉 What does he do on it?
Best of luck!
The experience will truly make you appreciate your partner even more. I bet these 7 days can’t go by fast enough for you.
Well you are getting some series brownie points with the missus so hopefully you can collect at a later date
Good luck! My wife did this to me a few years back. The day after she left there was an ice storm that knocked out all the power in our area. We were camping in our living room with flash lights and trying to cook on the wood burning fireplace. It was a long and cold 3 days until the power came back on.
Good luck Mr. Tako. I’ve done the same to my wife, going on week long business trips… she’s a saint for being able to do everything by herself!
Good luck with caring for the kiddos yourself over the next few days.
I find it hard to care for my 3 young kids by myself. If I have to care for them for even a whole day by myself I will probably pay a visit to my folks. 🙂
Haha, no doubt you guys will have a great week and the kids will survive the time with only dad around! But, I definitely get ditching the blog and social media during this time… it’s exhausting to try to do everything on your own!