The Bubble-Lites didn’t work and I didn’t barf (but the dog did). Another Christmas comes and goes and the task of “getting back to it,” whatever anyone’s version of that is, rears its predictable and kinda boring head.
Part of getting back to it for the kids and I is carrying on into another year almost as if their dad, my ex, doesn’t exist.
This year, 2013, the kids talked to their dad exactly once each. He lives 1.5 hours away. His oldest daughter graduated grade 8 in the Summer. No call, no attendance. His youngest daughter won silver in her field lacrosse league. No encouragement from him on the sidelines, no slogs to inconvenient places just for the joy of watching her play. Essentially, no interest. The only acknowledgement he even offered of their existence was a cactus delivered to our door for one daughter’s birthday, and a bouquet for the other on her birthday. The florist card (in the florist’s writing) read Happy Birthday. That was it. No call to one daughter and a voice message left for the other. No visit for either. I urged the girls to call their dad to thank him, which they both did but begrudgingly. Both were worried about what he or his girlfriend might say to them, mostly along the lines of accusations of treating their dad poorly. Both felt strongly that he should be calling them on their birthdays.
Otherwise, it’s been a year+ of silence from their dad. I can’t begin to imagine why he is behaving like this. I mean, I predict he would say it’s because of me, because he wants zero contact with me. I guess it could be as straightforward as that. But if that’s it, that’s his big
excuse reason, then it makes me question him even more. As in, what the fuck?
The kids interpret it as he doesn’t care about them. I can’t even give them good evidence to argue against their perception. What is there to say? Not days, not weeks, not months, but years are rolling by as he secludes himself from their lives and no doubt mopes about not getting what he demanded in terms of access – some unrealistic version of loose access where he is capable first of communicating with me and then able to arrange visits on the fly, being considerate and understanding of everyone else’s time and schedules outside of his own.
So 2013 is just about done. I doubt this New Year I’ll get any message from the girlfriend like I have in the past about patching things up, apologies, etc. I think this time they have both dug in their heels and I’m not sure what earth has to move to get him re-involved with his children. Perhaps he’ll continue to play the alienated father and persist on heaping the blame not only on me, but on the children. Perhaps he’s the type that will just wait, and wait and wait until the girls, curious and older, seek to contact him to figure out what the hell he was thinking. Perhaps he’ll have a health scare that will prompt not him but his pitiful girlfriend to contact the girls with guilt-ridden messages. Perhaps he will magically mature and realize that he is his own worst enemy and that moving forward means facing and having the tolerance for some initially crappy stuff. Or, perhaps it’s somehow inexplicably easier for him to maintain the status quo of removing the children from his life and carry on with his own existence, his bubble life where no one from his past gets in and no one comes out. The air must get toxic in that bubble.
Anyway, this is our new normal and sadly, it simply feels normal now not to have the dad/ex around. I no longer lament about it because it’s very obvious I can do nothing about it. In fact, I’m the last person that could. This will have to be something he one day (or not) sorts out with the kids. Until then, we wait and see what 2014 brings.
Have a great New Year one and all.