No Day but Today…

I am doing the parenting work of two adults, so I must also give the double parental love...

I am doing the parenting work of two adults, so I must give the double the parental love…

Before 7:30am this morning, my facebook newsfeed notified me of two children who had succumbed to cancer. It felt especially close to home because I personally knew one of the families, whose 15 year old son had died of bone cancer, and the other family were friends of friends. As is the natural reaction for parents when hearing this sort of sad news, I wanted to hug my daughters and hold them close.  One of my children had already left for school, and the other was still asleep in bed. I woke up my younger daughter with an extra kiss and cuddle and the silent promise to myself that I would give my elder daughter an extra kiss when she came home from school.

Then I remembered how my daughters often respond to my I-love-yous with sighs of “We know, mum.” This never deters me from saying it and only strengthens my resolve to find new and interesting ways to make sure that my daughters know, deep down, just how much I love them.

As double parents, I feel that it is absolutely imperative that we take extra time to ensure our children know just how much we love them. Kids learn so much unconsciously, without any overt teaching. But as children, they look at their world through their own kid’s eyes and as such, they don’t have the emotional maturity and insight to equate all you do for them (as a double parent doing double parenting work) with how much you love them. Later on, when they look back at their childhoods through adult eyes, they will, and then they will be grateful.

So when you put your kids to bed tonight, tuck them in and kiss them twice. Most kids from two-parent families will be getting a kiss from both parents before they go to bed at night. So if, for example, a double parent mum only kisses and hugs her kid the same number of times as a non-double parent mum would, her kid gets half the number of parental kisses and hugs it would be getting if it were being raised in a two parent family. As double parents, we work hard to make sure our kids are raised just as well as any other. Physical touch is therapeutic and important to emotional well-being – we all know that.

So while I may sometimes bore my daughters by telling them too often how much I love them, I figure that since I am doing the parenting work of two adults, I must also give the parenting love of two. And for that, there is no day but today.

Here’s Idina Menzels’ acoustic version of ‘No Day but Today’ from the musical Rent.

There’s only us
There’s only this
Forget regret– or life is yours to miss.
No other road
No other way
No day but today

There’s only yes
Only tonight
We must let go
To know what is right
No other course
No other way
No day but today

I can’t control
My destiny
I trust my soul
My only hope
Is just to be

There’s only now
There’s only here
Give in to love
Or live in fear
No other path
No other way
No day but today

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One thought on “No Day but Today…

  1. […] What’s a single person to do? What’s a double parent to do?? Well, as far as I can tell, you have two choices. You can either wallow in self-pity that you are without a romantic partner on the most [forced and fake] romantic day of the year. Or you can reframe and reclaim the day for yourself. Here’s the DP’s guide to not only surviving but reclaiming and reframing V Day: 1. Don’t act like it’s not Valentine’s Day. It is, and you can’t change that. Be happy for those who are happy today – just like you would be happy for them any other day of the year. 2. Be conscious of the fact that like any unpleasant day, it will be over soon. 3. Reframe the day: look for the upside to not having a partner today (or any day) – remind yourself why you are better off without your ex. Remind yourself of what a great job you are doing as a double parent all by yourself. Remind yourself that you are fantastic person and having a husband, wife, or partner doesn’t change that fact. 4. Reframe the day: it doesn’t have to be about romantic love. Make today about the ones you love the most and do something extra special for your children. That doesn’t mean you have to dash out and buy something store bought or expensive. In fact, it’s better if you don’t. Do something your child/ren won’t expect you to do, for example, make your child’s bed and leave them a surprise note on their pillow. Whatever you do, make it a thoughtful demonstration of love that shows your child/ren how much you love them and not how much you’re willing to spend on them. 5. Reclaim the day: do something for yourself. Do something out of the ordinary and something that you wouldn’t normally do for yourself. If you hate cooking, order take-away or take the kids out for dinner. If you love flowers, buy your favourites. Treat yourself the way you deserve to be treated. 6. Reframe the day: remind yourself that you don’t need a man or woman to make you happy or feel special. You’re an adult and you are responsible for you own happiness and building up your own self-esteem. Life is what you make it (and all that jazz). Be ultra-conscious of the fact however you handle today, your kids will be watching you. 7. Be the parent your children deserve. Demonstrate your unconditional love for them every day of the year. Here’s why you should kiss them twice as much as you already do https://thedoubleparent.wordpress.com/2012/11/30/no-day-but-today/ […]

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