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A Single Mom Finally Found Balance in a Pandemic

Leslie Tander

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Balance is hard to come by with three kids. It was bad when I was married, and it led to lots of strife and hurt, but when I became a single mom, I began to get the idea. I made myself a plan and began to work it. I meant I was going to find balance for my family.

When I say I worked a plan, I mean I started looking out for me, for I knew that if I didn’t I’d never be able to do a good job as a single mother. I started going to bed at a decent time. I started working out. I searched out and attained a job that I enjoyed; this was a key step. When my ex had the kids, I spent some limited time each week seeing movies with friends or going downtown to hear a band. I even went on the occasional date.

I was still struggling, though. I felt like my life was getting the better of me. My responsibilities were, well, doing everything. Does everyone have clean socks? Are all the lunches made? Did we get turkey yesterday to make lunches today? We’re out of toilet paper, so I have to load up three kids and go to the store for just that one thing. It was a chore. I had to be plumber, accountant, first responder, and more, and still have the temperament to console them when their world was hurtful or scary or sad.

I felt overwhelmed, like I’d never, ever achieve balance in my home. Then, the health crisis, the pandemic, came along and turned everything on its head. How would I possibly be able to work with my kids not in school? My mom and dad were elderly, and I was afraid for them. It was strange though. As I began to focus on the “macro”, the “micro” seemed so much easier to handle.

I felt so blessed to be able to work from home, knowing how many had no work at all. I was able to spend more time focused on my kids, teaching them, yes, but also, just spending time with them. It was beyond awesome. 

I ordered groceries and had them delivered. We were having pizza and Korean BBQ delivered fairly often. It was nice to get a break from cooking every single night. It was great not to have so much stress on me, as well. It had been bearing down on me for so long that I had forgotten what a light load felt like.

With social distancing in place, my social life had slowed to a halt. I’d figured this would be gut-wrenching. It wasn’t; it was great. My kids kept me from being lonely. They were warm, interesting company.

Life as a single mom, as a mom, period, is what it is. Life is what it is. However, should it not make us stand up and take notice when it’s a worldwide pandemic that finally makes us take a breath and slow down a little, do a few less things. It should reveal to us just how easily we can pile too much onto our own shoulders until we can no longer bear the weight.

Of course, we aren’t going to escape the stressers that plague us as parents, but we must always keep in mind that a parent’s life is just a game of Beat the Clock, and we’re all trying to win. Whatever we can do to stop that clock brings more balance to our families.

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Life

35 Life Hacks That Will Revolutionize Your Life

Lea Lomas

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Life is all about learning and as we age, boy, do we learn a lot! In order to make the most out of the wisdom we gain from age, we’ve decided to collect 35 of the most clever life hacks on the internet. You can use these simple life hacks for everything from work and travel to getting chores done faster around the house. 

Once you learn these life hacks, you will never want to go back!

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Life

35 Life Hacks That Will Revolutionize Your Life

Sherry Rucherman

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Life is all about learning and as we age, boy, do we learn a lot! In order to make the most out of the wisdom we gain from age, we’ve decided to collect 35 of the most clever life hacks on the internet. You can use these simple life hacks for everything from work and travel to getting chores done faster around the house. 

Once you learn these life hacks, you will never want to go back!

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Animals

A Koala Mother Babysits Three Joeys

Mackenzie Freeman

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The parents who have several young children at home often talk about the challenges that they face. Caring for even one very young child is certainly difficult. Having three kids like this just multiplies all of the associated obstacles. Strangely enough, many animal parents don’t quite seem to have the exact same issues. Then again, it’s possible that koala parents might have some of the same problems. 

Very young children tend to squirm and kick whenever they’re held. Parents who have twins sometimes have a difficult time holding both of the kids at once for that reason. They might get used to it, but it still might pose a lot of challenges physically. These situations are even tougher on the parents who actually have triplets. There are koala mothers who have to care for three joeys at once. A koala mother at the Billabong Zoo was in that situation recently. 

Human parents have certain inherently advantages. The fact that humans are comparatively tall certainly helps. Human infants and toddlers are very small compared to their parents. Many animal parents are not as fortunate, including the koala mother at Australia’s Billabong Zoo.

While these koala joeys are actually capable of climbing trees on their own, they seem to prefer resting on her back. While they’re still smaller than she is, the size difference is actually relatively modest. The mother koala seems to be only around three times the size of each individual joey. Since there are three of them, she seems to be at least somewhat overwhelmed. 

The koala joeys can’t seem to sit still, and all four of them seem as if they’re struggling to get comfortable and stay that way. They aren’t resting peacefully on the mother’s back. Instead, they’re constantly shifting and stepping on her. As this is happening, she’s still trying to hold onto the tree. They almost look as if they’re scratching her at times, which is enough to make anyone feel sorry for the mother koala.

It’s an entertainingly adorable image, but the mother koala still seems to be struggling to keep up with all of these joeys. She’s being remarkably patient, especially when people consider the situation overall. These koala joeys were not actually hers. She was just looking after them.

This sort of thing might surprise a lot of people, since koalas are not especially social animals. In fact, plenty of relatively unsocial animals will care for babies that aren’t theirs. They’ll still have the caregiver instinct, which can be helpful in a zoo environment. 

Koala joeys are actually very strongly connected to their parents emotionally. They spend months in pouches, and aren’t even remotely independent for a full year. It takes them even more time to become truly independent, and they’re still very attached to their parents from that point onward. This koala is not actually their mother, but they have the same sort of bonding instinct that her actual children would have. She’s acting as their mother, and that appears to be good enough for the joeys. 

Even though they could spend time on the tree alone, many of them are not going to want to do so. Koalas are generally very inactive animals. The mother koala in particular just seems to want to rest, and the joeys are not making that easy. Still, as energetic as they are, the joeys still settle down some of the time. 

It almost looks as if all four of them are going to fall any second. Still, all koalas are adapted to this sort of situation, and they’re astonishingly good at staying on trees. 

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