There was a time in our marriage when Mike traveled extensively, occasionally out of reach, as when he crossed from Germany into Poland during the Cold War. During one trying separation, I promised God that, surviving these times, I would assist a single mother with her struggles. God heard the promise and laughed. It was years before I became aware that the single mom would be our daughter, and the assistance would be full time.
Many people assume that because we live together, ED requires financial and emotional support. She can stand on her own. She pays her way (or more, at times). She is the mother 100%. She works more than full-time. Although the news is reporting a lack of workers. I am not sure what people are doing. ED and her friends are working like maniacs.
Thus, the household has been full of tension recently as ED struggles to work her 50+ hours, grab time for hiking, and muster the energy to cope with two teen-age boys, one of whom is in the hormonal adolescent sulkiness.
Mowgli had reached the pinnacle of my tolerance. This loveable, energetic nymph had transformed into a swirling cloud of nastiness. Sensing his fears that I will try to take his mother’s place (no way!), I implored Mike to address Mowgli, suggesting a script before sending sent him off.
My brief intervals of single parenting taught me that it is nice to have a partner to relieve the tension when needed. You know, the day you come home from a tough day at work and just want to take a hot bath, but Junior needs extra help with homework or assurance to traverse the intricacies of adolescence. Or is nasty when you feel nasty. Or the spouse comes home and needs you to be the calm presence. I think that is the reason God required two people to make a baby.
My words or Mike’s, it worked. Mowgli displayed a civilized demeanor the following day. It won’t last, I know. But everyone needs another half. I am glad that we can be here for ED.