Shared Parenting: Are you back from vacation yet?

Now that my daughter’s father is back from a three week working vacation, I’ll state with new conviction: Shared Parenting is Great for All! 

Yes, my spending the last few weeks solid with my daughter gave us some “never-before” terrific moments - like a trip to the zoo, a Friday night on the town, a day climbing rocks and waterfalls, and all meals together - but now that it’s done: Whoo-Hoo!  I’m certainly grateful for the intense time that we’ve been able to share together since October’s start, but her smile and wide eyes said it best: “Dad’s Home!”

My daughter loves her dad and for that I’m very grateful.  My goal from her birth through to this moment has been focused on one thing: having her smile in love and security while in her dad’s and my arms.  My ex and she have exciting adventures together and do stuff that is different then the stuff that we do.  And that is great.  So, I’m just as excited as she is that “Dad’s Back!” 

Shared Parenting, where my daughter feels nurtured by both of her parents, works.  Through concentrated effort, we do our best to keep focused on her and her best interest.  I trust that the bumps that we’ve had have been smoothed out by continually trying to improve it.  To me, shared parenting isn’t about schedules and procedures - although schedules guide our week; it’s about a shared interest in her smile.

When my older daughter and I took off for a month this past summer, my younger daughter’s dad and I decided together that it was better for her to stay behind with him during that excursion.  We decided that her sitting in the backseat for 6000 miles (even with her sister and me and the sites of the West) wasn’t going to be nearly as much fun for her as going swimming everyday with him.  So we worked together to get plans, playdates, schedules, toys, and clothes coordinated so that she would be well taken care of in my absence.  I know she had a great time with dad.

And as her dad departed for his trip, he knew that she would have a great time with me. 

The rewards of shared parenting?  There are so very many rewards - including the time together and the time apart for both my ex and me with our daughter.  But the best reward is reserved for her.  I love that my daughter is secure enough to exclaim “I missed you!” to either of us, without fear that she is “hurting” the parent that stayed behind with her.  Real security comes in being able to express “I missed you!” and knowing that you’re loved all around.

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Mindful mom, thinker, and author, Ellen Kellner, guides parents through The Pro-Child Way® of nurturing their child’s spirit through her intuition, discernment, and experience.  Her book The Pro-Child Way®: Parenting with an Ex is available on Amazon.comhttp://www.TheProChildWay.com

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