Should I give up Christmas with my girls? Should I send them home early from our annual vacation for the funeral of their step-grandparent if he passes during the trip? Should I have my daughter’s migraines treated with acupuncture, which would be a significant monthly expense, even if her dad won’t pay a portion? I stared down each of these questions in the past 90 days.
Christmas without my girls brings instant tears to my eyes.
I want to stomp my feet on the ground like a five-year old not getting her way when I think of cutting my vacation time with my daughters short.
My temper flares and resentment swells when my former spouse disagrees with an optional medical treatment.
Each of these situations induced an immediate negative emotional response. These questions were not easy for me. I knew the answers required deliberation and thought. How could I get out of my heart and into my head to make a decision?
Allow me to now introduce my personal parent advisory board. This “board” is comprised of a handful of people whom I trust and can turn to when I am stuck in an emotional parenting moment and need help determining the reasonable response.
My mom – who will love me no matter how ugly I may sound when speaking from raw emotion and who loves my daughters nearly as much as I do.
My best friend from high school who is my fierce defender, my personal historian, and a mother of daughters who understands the gut punch these questions create.
My paralegal – who is unfailing in her application of fairness and integrity to any situation – regardless of the people and her personal opinions of the people involved.
My best friend – who does not have children, who my daughters adore and consider a friend, and who tells me his opinion with a level head and without hesitation for my feelings.
This is my parenting team – likely unbeknownst to them. When I am faced with a parenting decision dilemma, they are my go-to. When I react negatively and emotionally to a new co-parenting issue, I have ease in knowing my first action is to get advice. I have my constant and consistent advice-givers ready to support me. With my team in place I am able to pull myself out of my pout quickly and move into a decision that best supports my daughters and my co-parenting relationship.
Who is on your team?