On the Tuesday before the Saturday Kevin is to return from his month in Africa my sea salt grinder came apart in my hands right over the Greek pasta salad I’d just finished. This mechanical failure sent giant salt crystals pouring down on dinner rendering it inedible. We ate hummus, crackers, and apple slices instead. This mama was over it.
The kids and I Facetimed Kevin multiple times a week. Not a day went by where Kevin and I didn’t at least have a text exchange. We had other ways to feel close to what he was doing like keeping track of his days on a big desk calendar.
We're at 28 Xs now - three boxes to go!
We always knew what time it was for Kevin because we reset the microwave to Kenya time.
3 in the afternoon for us = 10 at night for Daddy.
We learned about the people Kevin was serving by reading A Long Water to Water by Linda Sue Park a chapter a night till we were done.
There's this scene with crocodiles... *shudders*
Kaden chose an article about the war in South Sudan for his first current event assignment. (And got 100%!)
Even so, Kevin was still there, seeing and experiencing new things, and we were here up to our usual grind.
But! In that grind the kids were never late to school. I volunteered for picture day. I scheduled and attended an IEP review. I ran errands: Toby to OT, Blue home from tae kwon do, oil change here, dry cleaning pick up there. Two of us got haircuts (me and Blue). I painted two bedrooms in my mom’s house and reorganized our own home office a task that involved me building a shelf. (For real.)
And Kevin doesn't think I follow directions!
Church meetings, book club, and writer’s group were all attended. Bible studies got prepared and taught. I won a book and read that book. I took the kids to the beach twice, a science festival, and one Saturday we crossed the state and visited my dad. This Saturday, before Kevin gets home, we’re going to the zoo. (Kaden is signed up for the "Impressive Impalas junior zookeeper class.)
We decorated for fall. Began Halloween costume purchases. Most dinners were cooked without incident. Clothes got washed. Beds got made. Floors got swept. Dog got fed. One broken salt grinder aside, we faired well.
Single parenting is doable! Well, so long as you don’t have to work and have a free grandparent babysitter available for the aforementioned church meetings, book club, and writer’s group.
For a month anyway.
Because there’s something about doing life without a partner physically available that made all of the above a touch harder. In spite of my, “I’m great! Just missing Kevin! It’s the longest we’ve ever been apart!” glib answer to the ever-frequent how-are-you question, I was often a little gloomy.
I was going to be SO productive with my evenings while Kevin was gone. Finish the first draft of my current novel! Update the blogs! Read all the things! (One adult book and one kid’s book is the least I’ve read all year.) Instead I binge-watched ABC Family’s Greek from start to finish and THEN went back and re-watched all my favorite episodes pining for MY college boyfriend. (Which would be Kevin, so that’s ok.)
I missed my husband, was initually nervous sending him to all things unknown (That incuded a war zone... searching for appropriate articles for Kaden's current event that first week Kevin was gone may not have been the smartest move in easing my concerns.), but family policy has always been: fear doesn't make our decisions. The boys missed their dad but learned that sacrifice is part of being an obedient Christ-follower. So yes, we'd make the same decision all over again, but here's hoping not anytime soon. We're ready for Kevin to be home.