Co-parenting milestones – how to cope without your child

There are times when single parenting is really tough.  Sometimes co-parenting is really tough.  Don’t get me wrong, some single parents would do anything for the other parent to be involved in their child’s upbringing, for an evening off every once in a while, to have an uninterrupted night’s sleep a couple of nights a week.  This is how to cope without your child through co-parenting milestones.

No one ever said that co-parenting was going to be easy, but this morning was particularly hard.  As a co-parent, it is always the first co-parenting milestones that are the most difficult.  Their first birthday with the other parent, the first Christmas without them, the first time they meet your ex’s new partner.  Once you’ve crossed these co-parenting milestones, it becomes a lot easier to do it again.   

co-parenting milestones

Cygnet left for a week’s holiday with his Dad this morning. 

A week is a long time.  Cygnet has only ever spent two consecutive nights with his dad.  They have a four hour flight and then a ferry crossing to contend with. 

But I am not worried about Cygnet.  He’ll be fine. He’s not quite three years old and has no real concept of the length of time.

I am the one with the concept of time and I am the one who will miss him terribly. 

After he left the flat felt so quiet and empty that I had to leave it.  I have come to Costa coffee for breakfast and some blogging.  My parents are coming round later and will be helping me to sort my flat ready for the builders to come round tomorrow to install central heating, a new kitchen and a bathroom. There is a lot going on and I will have a lot of distraction. 

Significant co-parenting milestones are easier to deal with when you are busy.  In future, I plan to have a perfectly indulgent holiday when Cygnet is with his dad. 

Dealing with Christmases, birthdays and other significant milestones is easier if you don’t get hung up on the date.  Who said Christmas day has to be on 25 December?  I’ve had a wonderful Christmas day with Cygnet on the 27 December.  Cygnet doesn’t know dates, he understands experiences.

The Queen of England has two birthdays every year, and so does Cygnet.  He has one birthday celebration with his Mummy and one with his Daddy.  He is thoroughly indulged, but then so are lots of children. 

I am now going to stop feeling sorry for myself.  I have a busy and productive week ahead of me.  At the end of it, our home will feel a lot more like our home, rather than the home of the 86 year old lady who occupied the flat before us.  I will work some extra hours at work.  It will be a relief not to have nursery pick up times dictate my schedule. 

I have a couple of evenings out with friends who I have not managed to catch up with for a while.  I have a theatre trip planned, and on Saturday, just as Cygnet is in the air on his way home from his holiday, I will be having my hair done. 

Cygnet won’t notice my hair do, but it’ll be nice to end this co-parenting milestone with a bit of indulgence and self-care.

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42 Comments

  1. August 19, 2017 / 9:02 pm

    My heart goes out to you but at the same time it swells with joy that there are parents like you showing others the way. It cannot be east to be away from Cygnet but you always make sure that he is unaware of the difficulties. #KCACOLS
    Rachel George, Ordinary Hopes recently posted…My Disney Divorce.My Profile

    • thesingleswan
      August 21, 2017 / 8:59 pm

      Thank you Rachel. That is a really nice comment to read. Pen x

  2. August 19, 2017 / 9:39 pm

    I’ve just sent this to my sister. Her girls at older, teenagers, but they’ve just gone on holiday with their dad for a week. Thank you for giving her comfort #KCACOLS

    • thesingleswan
      August 21, 2017 / 8:58 pm

      Hi Becky,

      Thank you. Feel free to give your sister my contact details Pen@thesingleswan.com if you like. We can give each other support. Pen x

  3. August 19, 2017 / 10:01 pm

    As hard as it is for you be happy in the knowledge that you are encouraging a long lasting relationship between your child and their father and that is a wonderful thing. My partner has a son and when he was 3 we had to move 3 hours away because of his job. He was only allowed to see his son very occasionally and we had to do the 6 hour round trip to go and get him. We have worked so hard to try to keep a relationship there. His son is now 18 and he has never spent a Christmas or a birthday with his Dad. You’re doing a wonderful thing and your child will be so thankful for it. #KCACOLS

    • thesingleswan
      August 21, 2017 / 8:55 pm

      That’s really nice to hear Nicola, thank you. It is really tough sometimes and i have to remind myself that I am doing this for Cygnet. Pen x

  4. August 22, 2017 / 4:54 am

    Ah I’m certain it’s harder on the Mums. Glad you have a lot of things on hand to keep you busy. #mg

    • thesingleswan
      August 22, 2017 / 10:35 pm

      I think it is harder on the mums too, but then I am incredibly biased because I have only ever lived it from the mum’s perspective. I am sure it is tough on both parents. Pen x

    • thesingleswan
      August 23, 2017 / 10:44 pm

      Thank you Mac. Loads of love. Pen x

  5. August 23, 2017 / 10:40 am

    It is very hard I imagine…I struggle during a sleep over or even when my Big, spent 10 minutes in her room last night, trying to go to sleep in her own bed, before she came back into ours and snuggled, then snored deeply. You are one strong lady and Cygnet will be too, as a result! #mg xoxo
    Lisa Pomerantz recently posted…The chaos of the smile theoryMy Profile

    • thesingleswan
      August 23, 2017 / 10:43 pm

      Thank you Lisa. That is a lovely comment to read. I appreciate it. Pen x

    • thesingleswan
      August 26, 2017 / 10:26 am

      Thank you. Your ex sounds very difficult. There are pros and cons to every single parenting scenario… Pen x

  6. August 25, 2017 / 12:14 am

    I hope your week rolls smoothly for you; sounds jam packed. But oh it must be tough. It sounds like you guys have this well sorted out. Good on you. #FridayFrolics

    • thesingleswan
      August 26, 2017 / 10:26 am

      Thanks Anna, Pen x

  7. August 25, 2017 / 12:43 am

    This is something that I haven’t had to deal with. Very difficult. Not sure how I would handle it.
    #fridayfrolics
    Barrie Bismark recently posted…Lice, Lice BabyMy Profile

    • thesingleswan
      August 26, 2017 / 10:25 am

      Thanks Barrie. Pen x

  8. August 25, 2017 / 7:22 am

    You are an amazing mum and your attitude seems spot on regarding dates like christmas and birthday. I hope the week goes okay and that you enjoy your trip to the hairdressers x #FridayFrolics
    Emma recently posted…What Glitter Bombing Vaginas Tell Us About The WorldMy Profile

    • thesingleswan
      August 26, 2017 / 10:25 am

      Thanks Emma. Pen x

  9. August 25, 2017 / 1:29 pm

    It sounds like you’ll have enough to keep you busy! Cygnet will have a great time and he’ll be so excited to see you when he gets back
    Thanks for linking up to #AnythingGoes 🙂
    Debbie
    Random Musings recently posted…Blogger Spotlight Interview: Cup of ToastMy Profile

    • thesingleswan
      August 26, 2017 / 10:24 am

      Thanks Debbie. Pen x

  10. August 25, 2017 / 4:20 pm

    I never really thought of that side of it. What you say makes perfect sense but we’re always bombarded by people who have to do it alone and how hard they have it. Of course the other side of the coin is hard. I couldn’t imagine it. Peachy and I are together almost every minute of every day. If I have to leave her for an hour I’m rushing around to come home to her as fast as possible. I’m sure it does get easier with time and I feel extremely fortunate that I have the luxury of allowing it to be so hard. I hope the week flies by and that you have a productive and indulgent time. Take care. Thanks so much for linking up at #KCACOLS. Hope you come back again next time

    • thesingleswan
      August 26, 2017 / 10:24 am

      Hi, Yes, you’re right. Often the most challenging thing about single parenthood is the all or nothingness. When Cygnet is with me he is all encompassing and I can’t ask a partner or someone to play cars with him for 20 mins while I have a shower. And then he isn’t with me and I feel a bit lost. Thanks for your comment. Pen x

  11. August 27, 2017 / 8:38 am

    It must be so tough, but it’s great to read about how you are making it work for yourself and Cygnet. Co-parenting must be so hard. Really valuable post. #ThatFridayLinky

    • thesingleswan
      August 27, 2017 / 7:44 pm

      Thanks Adam. Best regards
      Pen x

  12. August 27, 2017 / 8:53 am

    I have done this and it’s really tough Fab honest post Thank you for linking to #ThatFridayLinky Please come back next week
    Nige recently posted…My Sunday PhotoMy Profile

    • thesingleswan
      August 27, 2017 / 7:44 pm

      THanks Nige. Pen x

    • thesingleswan
      August 28, 2017 / 8:19 pm

      Yaaay, thank you. Loads of love Pen x

  13. August 28, 2017 / 3:19 am

    My prayers with you and Cygnet. I am sure you are doing your best for yourself and him. Just wish He’d makes it easier. Hugs and kisses for the little one and you too! You can have Christmas any time. Enjoy yourself.

    • thesingleswan
      August 28, 2017 / 8:18 pm

      Thank you. Pen x

  14. August 28, 2017 / 7:22 am

    It must be tough. I can’t imagine spending that long apart. Thanks for linking up to #ThatFridayLinky
    Emily recently posted…Should I let her win?My Profile

    • thesingleswan
      August 28, 2017 / 8:18 pm

      THanks Emily. Pen x

    • thesingleswan
      August 28, 2017 / 8:18 pm

      Thank you Morin. This is a lovely comment to read. I appreciate it. Pen x

    • thesingleswan
      August 28, 2017 / 8:17 pm

      Thank you for your lovely comment. Pen x

  15. August 30, 2017 / 8:44 pm

    I’m so glad you have big projects to help keep you occupied. I hope the week flies by quickly and you’ll hear lots of stories to make up for the lost time with Cygnet. #GlobalBlogging

    • thesingleswan
      August 30, 2017 / 10:59 pm

      Thank you Heather. Pen x

  16. August 31, 2017 / 6:07 pm

    I was raised by my mom, a single parent. I never went to stay with my dad, but I can imagine that if I did, it would have been very difficult for her. I have the utmost respect for single parents. Wishing you a comforting yet eventful week! Cygnet is one special kid! x #globalblogging

    • thesingleswan
      September 1, 2017 / 7:19 pm

      Thank you my love. Pen x

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