Surviving a solo-parenting weekend

I’m on the heels of my longest stint of solo parenting—whew! While I love my children dearly, they are a lot of physical work, especially at their current ages (7 months and newly 4). It was a long weekend (no pun intended) of messes and big feelings, but also lots of outside time, quality time and fun. I will say that this time gave me more confidence as a parent, especially a newish parent of two, but I am also super grateful to have my co-parent back. (And, can we give a shout out to single parents and co-parents that are solo parenting for long stretches of time—the real unsung heroes!)

I wanted to reflect on how I came out the weekend relatively unscathed and have this as a reminder to my future self on the next solo-parenting adventure: 

  1. Lower expectations. This goes without saying, right?! I still need the reminder. Things will take longer, go undone, and new challenges will come up, so give yourself some grace.
  2. Ease up on the rules a little. Sure, it wasn’t going to be animal house, but I don’t need to worry about an extra episode of Mickey Mouse Clubhouse or an afternoon ice cream.
  3. Eat off of paper plates. Not economical or environmentally friendly, but seriously cuts down on clean-up time. I’m kicking myself for not thinking of this until the last day. 
  4. Put myself to bed early. At the end of the day, I just needed to lay down to decompress. That meant some of the dishes might not be done or the house not picked up, but see #1. 
  5. Get out of the house, but no big plans. We opted to stay really local, but did get out everyday. This isn’t a time to jam pack the calendar or do something new, but hitting up some local playgrounds or going for walks is a great way to break up the days. 

For all my parents out there solo-parenting full-time or part-time, we got this!

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