I've pretty much come to terms with the fact that I am, essentially, a married, single mother.

Not a single mother in the real sense because I do have a husband, and I get to stay at home and my chilren aren't dependant on my income to feed them (lord help us all if they were). But I am still parenting solo all the same.

I see my husband between 2-6 days a month. Most months it's 2 days. Occasionally I will get lucky and all 6 days are in a row. Most times not.

Most times I don't even know WHEN he will be here until he's actually here. On more than one occasion, he has been either at the aiport on or the road driving home, only to be called back out to work. It can be frustrating trying to plan things around that type of schedule.

I have three kids who are in 5 different directions all at the same time. This summer will be a blur of practices and drive thru windows. My oldest has decided, after 5 yrs of karate, he wants to try football. He'll still be doing karate as well, just not as much. Starting in August, he will have practice every day for 2 weeks, then drop down to 3 days a week, with games on Saturdays and possibly an "opening gamne" fo rthe local high school one Friday night. If they have a good season, they will have to move on to the bowls after the season. There's also all the away games that I never even considered when I agreed to this.

He is also in teh Gifted program at school, so as part of that, he gets to participate in what they are calling Kalidoscope for 2 weeks in June. He will study science and math everyday. At the end of the 2 weeks, he gets to go on a trip to Washington DC.

My youngest son is doing T-Ball again. Two day a week practices for a few weeks, then 2 games a week for about a month. At least it's only a month is all I can say. Kids that young don't have the attention span for an entire season.

My daughter, god love her, has decieded that I'm "too busy" this summer and she doesn't want to do anything. I know she woudl lov eto go back to horse camp this year, and I would love to take her, but it conflicts with everything else we are doing. This is when an extra set of hands would be great. She's being real understanding and trying hard to make it seem like it's totally her idea not to do anything this summer, but I know she would really like to go.

This are the times my mother-in- law would usually come in. To pitch in and help with the shuffling to and from. But, as I have bitched about over and over, she is moving. I was optomistic about my other inlaws being around to help as needed, but I am no longer expecting them to stay…if they even come up at all. My BIL's wife (woudln't she be my SIL?) is vehemently opposed to moving and the whole thing has gone from "We're moving up", to "We'll stay through teh summer and see how things go", to "I took 20 days off from work, we'll come up for a visit and go from there". I fully expect a phone call this week saying they have changed thier mind completly and aren't coming at all.

I know my husband is happy with his job. He's happier than I've ever seen him in a work enviroment. He is totaly in his element and that is something I woudl never want to take away from him. On the other hand…this really isn't what I signed on for 11 years ago.