By traditional I mean this little playmate has a dad. From the backseat of my car, he mentioned going to a father/son gathering near my home. Why do I always cringe when I hear the word “father” mentioned? It’s as if my son is going to scream out in agony “Mother, where is my dad?!”. My eye twitches and I clench the steering wheel.
This cute little boy is also of the Mormon faith. At my kitchen counter, as we dug into our hotdogs for lunch, he politely asked if we pray before eating. I dropped the bun mid bite and dodging his question, I ask him if he’d like to say a prayer. He politely asked me to, so I did.
I’m not real good at prayers out loud. Growing up, my family may have prayed as a group like…never. My father is an atheist, pretty much. My mother is a mix of Jesus, the Dalai Lama and Wayne Dyer. My ex husband’s father (not my son’s father), was a minister, so I have his meal prayer down pat. It came in handy. I came off like a professional prayer maker.
I think prayers are good. Why don’t I pray at meals? My family never did, so I always felt uncomfortable at the tables of families that did. I don’t want my son to feel uncomfortable.
So, for the time this kid is at my house, my parenting abilities are in question – as well as my lifestyle. Am I doing an OK job? What’s he going to go home and tell his father and mother? Should I give the kid sugar? Should I hid my boyfriends shoes? Why is my kid whining like that? Should I chime in when I think something is unfair, or do I let them hash it out?
Now that the play-date dust has settled – I am EXHAUSTED. I think I’ll have a glass of wine and go say a prayer (in silence) asking for clarity on parenting alone. Perhaps I’ll brush up on prayers at the dinner table. After all, I AM thankful for my kid and my life as a single mom.