Friday, June 20, 2008

Not About Houses, I Promise!

There's a subject that's been buzzing in my brain this past week. A subject that my mind vehemently swats away. I don't want to face it. I don't want to think about it. I don't want to realize that it's going to happen. I have to start preparing myself for the reality that it's happening and happening soon.

Next week I have to let my children go to their dad's house over 1300 miles away from me. Yes, I did have to do this last summer. Last summer was for 2 1/2 weeks and my ex was single. Everything was fine. I managed. They had fun. I even drove to his place to pick them up and we all hung out for a couple of days. No problem.

What's different this year? Everything. Mr. Ex has since moved in with a woman that he knew for all of a couple weeks before proposing to her. A woman who is older than he is (not that it matters, really) a woman who has no children of her own but wants them. A woman who only has Mr. Ex's version of the truth on everything. She doesn't even know why we are really getting divorced. He told her it's because we both realized that we were better off as friends (true but missing a pretty major sticking point in marriage - fidelity). I'm fine with the fact that he has someone else. He needs it. He does not do well on his own. What bothers me is that I don't know this woman and I have to let my children go live with her and Mr. Ex for SIX weeks! I know I'm lucky, he could have asked for the entire summer.

Ms. Fiancee and I have not gotten off to a good start. For starters I have had a couple of phones calls from her regarding the divorce. After the last one I told Mr. Ex that I am divorcing him, not her, and any further conversations are to be between him and me. If he doesn't understand something that's fine but then he needs to talk to me about it, not her. After these phone calls I wind up feeling attacked when I have done nothing wrong. I know that she doesn't have the full truth about our situation. I feel for her. I really hope that he has changed and they can make it work. I know that she will watch out for my kids when they are there. I know she will be nice to them. But I also have (unreasonable?) worries that she will push Mr. Ex to fight for full physical custody of the kids. There have already been comments made on Mr. Ex's part as to thinking that one or more of the children will ask to go live with them. That tears me apart. Mr. Ex has been in and out of our lives for the past five years (2 of them divorcing) and has not been constant in their lives at all. Even his phone calls are inconsistent and may go up to three weeks without speaking to them. I know that Ms. Fiancee wants children and is at an age where that may not happen for them. So there it is - my paranoid worries- that after this visit they will decide to go to court for the kids. Mr. Ex assures me that they do not plan that, but I have learned not to trust him.

Don't get me wrong. I get along pretty well with Mr. Ex. I wish him well in his new life and relationship. I want to see him happy and to see him get things together. I accept that there are aspects about him that will never change and I can accept him as he is. As long as I'm not married to him. When other people stay out of it, we get along just fine. For a while there, we were each other's support system as I got back into dating and he was trying to figure out where his life was going. I'm not worried that the kids will be mistreated or ignored or anything like that.

I am worried about the kids having to go to a new house in a new city (Mr. Ex moved to a new city for Ms. Fiancee) in a completely new situation. I am worried about how things will go. Anime doesn't want to go at all. She is miffed that she has to break up her summers, thus preventing her from getting a summer job. She is not close to her dad. Actress is "daddy's girl" and is thrilled. (Bless her heart. The sweet child actually told me last week that, although she's excited to go stay with her dad, I shouldn't worry because she wants to live with me because girls need their mommies. Waah! I still tear up!) Action just takes things as they come and goes back and forth between being excited and being upset because he has to miss the majority of the baseball season. Action is going through some behavior problems lately and I hope they won't be a problem while he's at his dad's. After our move he will be going to see a counselor to help him learn how to work through his emotions.

I'm worried how they will handle the difference between the two households. I am laid-back and more of a go with the flow person. When faced with the choice of clean up the house or all of us go to the local pool? I choose the pool. The chores will always be there. I'm about doing things, projects, music, playing games. I'm not a "things" person. Mr. Ex is. We have different value systems. I don't make a lot of money but Ms. Fiancee does. I worry that the kids will get the "Disney" experience and not want to come home. I worry that "the rules" will be very different in dad's new home and the kids will get in trouble. I worry that they will be too much for two people who are not used to having three very active and talkative children around the house. I worry, plain and simple.

I know that when it's all said and done, everything will be okay. I have to believe that. I know that I have to let go of my anger that Mr. Ex chose to live so far away with a woman he had only known for a short period of time. He was faced with the choice of moving for employment and it angers me that when he did have the choice of moving to the city that we are moving to, he chose a new relationship over being around for his kids. There. I said it. He chose her over our kids and then talks about how much he misses them and it just pisses me off. If you miss your children and truly desire to be part of their life then you go where they are, especially when you have that opportunity.

I know this post has rambled. That's the way my thoughts are going. I have purposely not talked much about my ex on this blog. The story of our life together would make a great book and sometimes even I wonder if we truly lived through all that we did. I try not to talk about him much because of the worry that he would find this blog. It would make him angry because my version of our life together is much different than his version of our life together.

Anyway, I have to trust in God and karma that the six weeks will go okay and that the kids will be happy to come back home, even if it is a new home and a new life. But, oh, how it rips my heart apart to have to let them go. I don't even have the words to describe the pain. But I will let them go next week, we will get through. Hopefully we'll all be a little bit stronger from this experience.


Nichole M said...

I can't even begin to imagine how hard this must be for you... for you all. So all I can offer is a cyber hug.


The Missus said...

You are completely justified in how you feel CB.

And if the Ex does decide to go after full custody, just know that you have plenty of evidence that you can lay out that would dispute the idea that he should have full custody. Between the infidelity, the lack of contact and the distance from his children... Those all count against him.

Bottom line, he can't just decide that he is the "better" person to raise the kids full-time simply because he has a new partner in his life.

You were the one being the parent while he was away doing his own thing.

Diane said...

I've been on the otherside of where you are, I am my husband's second wife. Your feelings are completely justified and good thoughts and phone calls are all you can do.