My Daddy’s Gone…

So I’m in Costco with June grabbing her a hot dog. Like the daughter I always wanted, she struck up a conversation with the guy behind us.

“My name’s Junie,” I hear her say.

“Oh? And how old are you?”

I looked back in time to see her hold up five fingers. Already lying about her age, nice.

“I bet you’re two,” he says.

She nods her head vigorously, then I watch as her shoulders slump and her head droops.

“My daddy’s gone,” she says in the most orphanic tone you’ve ever heard in your life.

The poor man, I couldn’t decide which of us was more uncomfortable.

“Uh,” I interject, “He’s in New Jersey.”


“I mean, he’s coming back to us! He hasn’t left us or anything…”

It was clear the man was debating the value of a dog since he couldn’t even make eye contact with the forgotten mother and her poor starving child in front of him. And I swear he actually took a step away from us, like we had a scarlet “A” for “Abandonment” slashed across our chests.

It was one of those moments where I seriously considered flashing him my ring and saying, “See? Do you think he would have let me keep this?”

In that moment, I felt a kinship with single mothers everywhere. Instead of explaining our situation, I decided to go with the “Pooh on you!” attitude, tipped up my chin, grabbed our dogs and breezed past him, nose held high (although those hot dogs make me want to puke these days).

The only thing I have to say about single parenting, no matter how you end up there, is Go You. This job isn’t easy, and we might live in the 21st century, but the judgers didn’t die out with the 1900’s. To all the mom’s who are hoofing it alone for however long it might last, you’ve got love coming at you from my corner.

And frankly, we all know that in 24 hours I have to start cooking again and doing regular sized loads of laundry. I love the boss, but I’ll miss my dirty little secrets.


  1. Oh, that is awkward. That guy may not have had a clue what to say, either. Or he may have just been a jerk.

    But were the hot dogs good?

  2. haha how funny. And I love Costco hot dogs. yuuum

  3. soon. so soon. you can make it these last few hours. so, so soon…

  4. I’m sure he totally wasn’t judging you! (Hee hee)

  5. So Annie I’ve been bad, I’ve been reading your posts but not commenting so today I repent and here I am.
    I just want to say Amen to your “Go You” comment. Unfortunately there are so many “single parents”, and it takes rallying around each other to keep us all going.

  6. How did I give birth to one of your intended kids?!

    Kelsi and I were in Costco the other day and she asked no less than 3 complete strangers to ‘pinkie shake’ with her (as I am walking behind her telling the adults she was accosting, “You don’t have to…”). Then striking up a completely in depth conversation with one of the sample people touching on subjects ranging from her new necklace to asking the guy to look at her teeth. It is crazy. Luckily everyone thought she was hysterical. But let’s face it, pinkie swears don’t fall in the same category as domestic dischord.

    Good luck with that girl and don’t ever forget your the one who yelled to your grandma in a shopping aisle “Pweese gwandma! Don’t get dwunk again!” When the woman was innocently buying a beer.

  7. Isn’t it interesting how we are always worried about what other people think of us and our possible situations. When I was pregnant with my son, I was attending a lovely party-hard-y university, full of rich, snobby, slutty girls. Walking across campus with my hugely pregnant belly before me, I felt an intense desire to flaunt my wedding ring to tell people, “NO, I did NOT get knocked up at a wild college party. I am a married woman!!!”

  8. These are the moments where we want to shrivel up and become invisible, but later we can laugh. I have a feeling that June is going to provide you with many moments like this.

  9. You are hilarious! I wish we were friends or had more friends like you.
    GO YOU! You’ve got love coming from my corner.

  10. He was probably wondering how he could ask you out . . . . Junie bug and all!

  11. There’s a girl I know in the military whose husband died and every week she goes alone to church, she gets slack for it. For two years people judged her. She finally spoke up in class one day and mentioned her husband’s passing and boy did things change.

    Thanks for sending the love, Annie. It’s needed.

  12. I’m dying, I’m dying, I am laughing so hard! Oh, thank you Kelly for bringing up that wonderful memory of Annie because I had forgotten all about it. Oh Annie Marie, what are you going to do with that girl? She is the most frustratingly precious thing ever, her and Kelsi would make a great team. I seriously can’t stop laughing, that is just so awkward. GO YOU, I love you!

  13. The first time we attended in our current ward, Superman was in the Army and drilling for the weekend. I really considered not going to church to avoid looking like a single parent, but the guilt was too much.

  14. Amen, and a shout out to the single mom rock stars who keep on truckin’ when their dreams didn’t come true.

  15. Yeah, everyone at church feels sorry for me because my husband is gone. I wish they would think before they asked me once again how long my husband is gone for, I really don’t enjoy telling it fifty times every Sabbath. Junie sounds precious, we could totally be friends. 🙂

  16. Thanks. I just laughed so hard I’m crying. I needed that.

  17. I am so happy for you that your sweet husband and Junie’s daddy will be coming home soon. Being a wife of a military man who traveled and was gone a way from home more than he was home, I can relate at being a single parent. IT’s very, very difficult. And it’s also difficult when they get home and things have to go back to whatever normal is or was. And just when everyone gets used to him being home, he’s gone again. Military life can be very ####### kids and parents. You have done a great job.

  18. One of my friends recently became a single mom. She has 4 young kids. She puts the A in Amazing, that woman. I don’t know how she does it, heels, spiky hair & all. I adore her.

  19. Junie what a talker. Kids say the darnest thing dont they. Annie maybe she was trying to explain why she was getting a hot dog. Like it was a treat to her since daddy was gone:00 Just a thought.

  20. Hey Annie,
    Just a shout to let you know I do read your blog – thanx for writing – and heck! do we all live at Costco – I was just there this week having lunch with my 5 year old, which I rarely do, and a very nice older man sat down next to us and we had a very lovely conversation. At least this guy was nice, right?! oh- did I mention my 5 year old was eating a hot dog? and yes, my hubby is gone 4 days/week on a regular basis, and has been for the last 3 years, so I can attest to the difficulties of single-parenting with little babies. A loud AMEN! to the love for all those truely single rock star women!

  21. I remember when my husband was out of town for 6 months and I stopped in at my neighbors house to drop something off. She’s a single mom of 4 kids and she simply asked how I was doing (I dont even think she knew my hubby was gone) and I just started bawling all over her front porch. Man single moms are the bomb. And those of us who have to do it every now and then are too.

  22. Thank you for the shout out to single mothers. 🙂

  23. I have been the worst friend EVER.

    Forgive me for ignoring you?