Maybe it's the reality and the simple fact of being a single, older mom that makes simplifying the day and my lifestyle essential. Getting "me time" energizes my whole outlook on life.
As a single mom, you take on the responsibility of the "dad and "mom" role. There isn't anyone to help share in the responsibility of parenting, homework, taking out the trash, groceries, and paying the bills, etc.
The "dad" and "mom" roles have collided. Yikes!
The definition for simplified; "to make less complex or complicated; make easier."
Three years ago on June 7th, 2015, my husband passed away of bone cancer. Life changed dramatically, and overnight I was the single parent raising my 7-year-old daughter alone for the first time.
That first year almost forced a mental breakdown, bearing the weight of grief within myself, and soothing that same pain within my 7-year-old daughter Bianca had taken its toll and along with handling the financial affairs of death.
Over the course of that first year, I had to learn to simplify my life. At first, Bianca was angry and resentful. I needed to take that emotional energy she has shown and put it to good use, especially to help her grow, to heal, and move forward as a happy child.
Just as in any relationship, business or personal, there has to be a collaboration between all parties involved. I took the time to sit with Bianca and discuss how we could make life easier for each other.
Creating team effort and simplifying the day.
In our chats, we agreed upon these time-saving expectations, and if she meets these expectations, then the privilege is earned.
Mornings. Alarms set for 7:00 am and 7:56 am. We both rise, Bianca gets dressed, makes her bed, puts pajamas away. I, in turn, make breakfast, or she helps too. She brushes teeth and hair; gets pack ready for school. 7:56 am Bianca walks out the door mentally and physically nourished. Mind the hug and kisses.
From the minute she walks out the door, I am simplifying too. I work from home, and I am an author and artist. I follow a schedule also. I throw clothes in the wash, spend an hour writing an article or poetry, check the washing machine, throw clothing in the dryer. Spend an hour social media marketing to share my work with my fans, followers. Next hour, I fold laundry and contemplate tomorrows writing making notes, pay bills, etc.
At 3:32 pm Bianca walks in the door, she hangs her coat up, and I check her backpack for homework. A healthy snack in the afternoon supercharges the brain for homework; I help if necessary.
After her homework completed, she rinses dishes and places them in the dishwasher and starts it.
Privilege time. Bianca is allowed one hour of Minecraft or Roadblox. Then thirty minutes guitar practice as I prepare for dinner. Dinner spent at the table sharing a conversation about the day and when we finish, all the dishes cleared.
7:00 pm; Bianca simplifies by starting the shower, getting her pajamas, brushing teeth. We then take forty-five minutes enjoying Netflix.
At 8:00 pm, I tuck her in with hugs and kisses, and storytelling of my younger days.
I've learned it a must to have a schedule; I find Bianca well rested and prepared for the day with smiles on her face. With this program, I get my ample time of "me time." And I smile too.