Now it's back to your regularly scheduled jaded objectivity.
In a world seeming lost in chaos, thank the lord there's Jim. He's a single dad of a 10-yr. old who has recently reclaimed his child from her free-spirited (read: mutually exclusive drug-addicted and self-absorbed) mother. He has cut back his hours at work to stay home more and keep a close eye on a girl who's used to raising herself. He's adjusted his budget to pay his bills and be there to teach her all the things she's managed to not learn so far, and correct the ones she has.
The kid, by the way, is a great kid. She went shopping the other day and spent her own money buying workbooks to help her get ready for a new school and a new grade by reinforcing reading and math skills (who does that at the age of 10??!) She is very mature for her age (imagine that, she's raised herself so far). She's good at solving problems and puzzles and plays better with adults than kids (ok, so maybe that's not such a great thing for her). She's also quite a bossy little thing, demanding that it be her way or the highway (not good for her age, but one day she'll grow into that attitude and take over companies with it).
But in a culture where the schools would ask for counseling, more control, and some parental signatures... in a society where her parents are encouraged to live their own lives, make more money, and set a good example by being stellar employees... her dad is cutting back to be a parent and take control of his daughter's environment.
(insert applause here)
It's so rare in this country that you hear about a single parent -- let alone a father -- putting the kid first and the job/career on the back burner. This kid is going to be just fine.
I hope there are more parents out there like Jim. If you know about any, please comment and add their stories.