Category Archives: Word Vomit

A Letter To Their Father

I’ve done this before…it’s cathartic…and I know I could never get him to listen to this, so why bother trying?  But my head has been in a fog and if I don’t get it out, I may explode…

To Their Father:

I use that term loosely, I hope you realize that.  You haven’t been a real father to the boys in more than a year and a half…and looking back on your idea of what it meant to be a stay-at-home father, I’m not sure you were so hot at it before we split…

You only come around when I give you a reason…you don’t support them…you don’t even know what their day-to-day lives are like…because you don’t ask…because you don’t engage…because you have faded to a distant background…

And now you’ve moved away…six hours away…and you didn’t tell your children…you didn’t say good-bye to them…what kind of father does that?!  The moving part is understandable…I get that…but to not explain to the boys that it would be a while before they saw you again…to not ease it for them?  Why?  Because it was too hard for you?  Well, fuck, a lot of this is hard…you’ve got it easy…you get to hide behind your pain and check out…and now you took the easy way out of the hardest thing you’ve done yet…didn’t you?

I was reminded recently that maybe it’s better that you aren’t around the boys…I don’t want them to end up like you…I want them to understand the value of hard work…the value of keeping their commitments…I want better for them than we have provided so far…

I held out hope in our marriage for a better life…and I continued holding on to hope through the past year and a half…hope that you would step up…hope that you would contribute…hope that you wouldn’t let your relationship with the boys suffer…it took me 12 years to give up hope on you and me…and it took me a year and half to give up hope when it comes to you as a father – the only thing I ever wanted from you in the divorce: be a good father…and you couldn’t do it, could you?

Well, your absence from their lives is your loss…remember that…

They are going to be fine…because I will make sure they’re fine…I will do what I’ve always done – I’ll continue to make sure you don’t look like an ass to your children…I will continue to make sure they never believe you just left them…you will always be “at work,” “at home,” or whatever else I can conjure up…

But don’t be surprised if there comes a day when someone else has taken your place…a place you walked away from…a place you gave up…

And by the way, stop asking me why I sound tired all the damn time…it’s because I am tired…playing the part of two parents takes it out of a person…maybe if you’d step up as a father, I’d be a little less “tired.”

Sincerely,
One Pissed Off Mama

Rougher Than Most

Father’s Day hasn’t been my favorite day for 10 years…10 years without my dad.  The first one was the hardest…the first one after my mom met The Step wasn’t easy for me…but after I had the boys, it became less painful because I focused on The Ex instead.  Last year, I thought more about my own dad than I did anything else – probably because The Ex was still around for Aidan and Sean (sort of)…

This year has been rougher than most…

Aidan made a Father’s Day card for The Ex that said: “You’re the best dad ever.”  And I wanted to cry – for multiple reasons.  First because this beautiful little boy still thinks his dad is the best one ever…and second because he doesn’t know it’s supposed to be better than this…he doesn’t know that dads are supposed to see their children more than once every couple of weeks…he doesn’t know that dads are supposed to make an effort to be a part of their children’s lives…he doesn’t know what he’s missing…

I’m not such a cold-hearted bitch that I would ever tell Aidan he’s wrong about his dad.  I purposefully don’t say a single negative thing about The Ex to either of the boys…and they adore their absentee father.  Good for them…I suppose.  He’s a lucky man, and he has no fucking clue.  He has the love of the two most beautiful boys on the planet…they don’t care that he’s broke…they don’t care that his living conditions are unusual – Aidan is dying to see where his dad lives…all they care about is him and being able to spend time with him.

Today, because it was the right thing to do (and only for that reason), I took the boys to see their dad…it was only an hour and a half – and yes, I would give him more time if he wanted it…but they were ecstatic…time with their dad is a precious thing…

I’m not a fool – I took that moment to do something without the boys…I went to the grocery store…it was the best $50 I’ve spent in a long time because I was able to focus on the task at hand…it was wonderfully luxurious…and I was fine…until I got to the car and realized it was time to go get the boys…and I started thinking…

I thought about my own dad and how much I miss him…especially when life is hard…I know if he were alive, he’d give me rough, no-nonsense advice that would sound (to the untrained ear) more like yelling…but I would pay attention and consider what he said…I don’t begrudge my mother one moment of happiness with The Step – but it doesn’t make me stop wishing Daddy was still alive…knowing what I know now, I’d rather be the child of a divorce and have both my parents than this

I thought about The Ex and how much of an idiot he is…I know that he loves the boys…and I think he shies away to keep from hurting…it must hurt to be away and be under the strain he’s experiencing…I get that…but to me, his are the actions of a coward…everybody hurts…everybody gets scared and stressed…we all know I’ve gone through those emotions a million times…but I haven’t walked away from my responsibilities…I haven’t walked away from the people I love because it’s somehow “easier!”

I thought about the boys and how I want so much better for them…I now understand what it is to look at a man and assess him – not on his looks, his clothes, his car…but on his ability as a partner, as a parent, as a provider…it’s a strange thing…it makes the whole process a lot more clinical that’s for sure…thankfully, I still have a little mojo in me, so it’s not completely sterile and clinical…ha!  It also makes me very picky…so far, in my limited experience, I’ve only come across one man who fits the bill…and we’re in a holding pattern…and I’m learning patience…

Overall, the only thing that matters is that the boys had a good time today…all they know is that they saw their dad and they had fun…and in the end, that’s probably all that really matters on a day like today…

To all the real men in this world who love, nurture, and provide for your children in whatever way you can, I say, Happy Father’s Day.

The Flipside of Peace and Contentment

Normally I would never post to the same blog twice in the same day…but I had such a beautiful start to my day…and it deserved its own post

I should have stayed on the beach…my day went downhill the moment I left…at first it was nothing but minor aggravations – lunch plans I decided to change…wishy-washy potential buyers of Bubba who kept backing out (yeah, I’m selling Bubba)…and then there was tonight with The Ex…

I knew I hit a breaking point when I cried through both of the books I read to the boys at bedtime…I couldn’t even hide it…Aidan didn’t say anything – that’s not his style…he’ll say something in a few days…

Thanks to some tough love from This Man, I had to face some truths…some of which he doesn’t even know I realized…the biggest? I have spent every moment of the past 13 years trying to make The Ex something he’s not…I tried to make him work…I tried to make him a partner in our marriage…and now I’m trying to make him a good father…

I am so afraid of the boys not having a relationship with The Ex that I include him in family activities, even though I really don’t want to…and he perceives (incorrectly) that I want him around – and I’m always disappointed because he spends the entire time we’re together focused on me, not on the boys…

It’s torture to have him around, but I tell myself it’s for the boys, and I’ll just suffer through…tonight, I guess I felt like I had suffered enough…I started crying and I couldn’t stop…

I feel like a failure…I can’t get The Ex to focus on the boys…I can’t get him to stop flirting with me, talking about his girlfriend, or telling me that he still loves me (God, make it stop!)…

I tell myself I’m doing this for the boys…because they need their father…because they’re better off with both of us…

The reality, though? I don’t want to be wrong – about everything…even though I have been…I was the idiot who married him…and although I wouldn’t have had the boys without The Ex, I saddled them with him as their father…I’ve already done it all wrong…and my biggest fear is that one day they’ll look at me and blame me because they don’t have a relationship with him…

Intellectually I know that could happen anyway…I know that I will endure all sorts of blame and accusations – that’s what kids do, right? At least until they figure it out for themselves…

But I don’t want it to be true…I don’t want them to not have a father because of me…I’m afraid of giving up on The Ex for the wrong reasons…it would be very easy for me to stop trying so hard to force The Ex to be a dad, but I’m afraid that my real reasons would have nothing to do with the boys and everything to do with how I feel – and isn’t that wrong? It feels wrong…

And if I let him slip out of their lives, who do I replace him with? Who else can be a father-figure to them? Yes, single parents have been doing this succesfully for a long time, but even I have to admit that two decent parental figures are better than one frazzled, frustrated, worn-out parent…they deserve better, and I don’t have better to offer them…so I just keep pretending The Ex is what they need…

I’ve been so wrong about so much…and this is the one thing I wish I could get right…

I Want, Part 2

Sometimes when I get something off my chest, I immediately feel better…ok, so sometimes I have to sleep on it, and then I feel better…

Yesterday wasn’t a horrible day, but talking about what was on my mind didn’t relieve any of the tension…today, I’ve felt lonely…loneliness is one of the worst feelings – and I’d like to think I’ve felt enough of crappy things in the past year to know…

A couple of weeks ago, I thought about what I wanted in life…and made a list…what I want right now, in this moment, is a little different…

I want someone to look at me with love in their eyes…

I want to hold hands…

I want someone who treats me gently – when I need it…

I want someone who wipes away the tears – and reminds me that it’s ok to cry…

I want my feelings to be considered…

I want to share my burdens…

I want to belong somewhere…with someone…

I want shared looks…

I want shared laughs…

I want intimate smiles…

I want what I can’t have right now…and it’s not even a matter of making it happen…

It’s the loneliness of my own life getting to me…it’s a fleeting feeling, I know that…being alone is not the worst thing in the world…of all the things I’ve experienced in the last year, this one is the hardest – not because it’s horrible…but because there’s no fixing it…I don’t want a random warm body just to fill the space, to fill the loneliness…

I can’t imagine that I’m the only single parent, hell, the only single person to feel like this…I wish I knew how other people handle it…I wish I knew how to cope better when it does start to get to me…most of the time, I just bury it down deep, because I try not to focus on things I don’t have control over…every once in a while, it rears it’s ugly head, and I’m not sure what to do about it…nothing I guess, except to write about it, and hope that the weight lifts…

Fairy Godmothers & Knights in Shining Armor

Sometimes I think I suck as a mom…

I have felt weighed down for a couple of days…I don’t have a good explanation for why…I just have…feeling this way affects how I am with the boys – and I hate it…

I don’t want Aidan on my lap – hell, isn’t he too big for that shit now?

I don’t care about potty-training Sean – except diapers are expensive and that’s my only motivation…

I yell at them for small things…I leave the TV on too long…hell, I stayed in bed an hour longer than normal and left both boys to their own devices this morning…a 2 year old and a 6 year old – and I am very aware of how lucky I was that nothing bad happened…

I know you don’t have to have a lot of money to do fun things and keep kids busy…I don’t even want to take them to the park…

What kind of mom am I?

Most people give platitudes – you’re just tired (no shit)…it’s just a bad day (too many bad days)…it gets better (yeah, when?)…they tell me not to be so hard on myself (except I am solely responsible for raising these boys, and I can’t fuck it up)…they all mean well…but it doesn’t change how I feel…

A few weeks ago I was damn lucky and got a genuine break…shouldn’t I just be grateful for that?

I’m not the only single parent in the world…I’m not the only one who does it on my own…how do other people do it?

I cried in the shower today…I had managed to get poop, pee, drool, chocolate milk, peanut butter, and all other manners of crap all over myself, and I hadn’t cared enough to shower until Sean’s nap – I could have, I just didn’t care…

I stupidly wished someone would swoop in and save me, make it all better, fix it…

There are no such things as fairy godmothers or knights in shining armor…this is the life I chose, and I just have to deal with it…somehow, that doesn’t make me feel any better…

A Letter To My Ex

I had dinner with The Ex tonight…and it was weird…there are so many things I wish I could say to him…but he either wouldn’t get it, or it would start an argument, or it would be unnecessarily harsh…sitting with him tonight, I ached to tell him what was on my mind…to lay it all out…but it wouldn’t make a damn bit of difference…so this is my open letter to The Ex…

To The Ex:

I’ve been thinking a lot about lately about our relationship, past and present…the years we were together were – well, they were something…but it was the last year – from our separation to now – that has changed everything for me…

You wonder why I act standoffish with you…you claim I look down on you…you call me a snob…you have no freaking idea…

I have watched you over the past year revert to the worst of who you are…you were emotional…you were impulsive…you never thought before you acted…and it was me who had to pick up the pieces…it was me that had to pretend nothing was wrong so the boys didn’t get anxious or scared…

It was me who took care of the boys…it was me who made sure they had what they need…you never even asked…you’ve become selfish…self-involved…you can’t do anything for the boys because you’re just “trying to survive.”  Guess what, buddy – we’re parents.  It’s our freaking JOB to go without so our children are taken care of…it’s our job to sacrifice for them…and I’m not even talking the luxuries…I’m talking basic necessities…food, shelter, heat, clothing…the BASICS…where have you been?

You don’t call…you don’t act like you want to see them…you talk good game…you talk about missing them…but talk is cheap…what are you doing about any of it?  Why aren’t you on my doorstep every other weekend to see the boys, even if it’s just for a couple of hours?  You are so inconsistent that there are days Aidan says he’d rather not see you…I think I know why…I think he hates missing you, and it’s easier not to even get his hopes up (God, he’s my child, isn’t he?)…

When we talk, you want to talk about this woman or that woman…you bring up This Man’s name like you know something…This Man thinks I should tell you shit just to fuck with your head, just to throw you off, just to get you to shut up…what he doesn’t understand is that there’s a price to pay for that…and the price I pay for telling you even a little something is a form of torture…I’d rather not deal with any of that…

How many nights have you called or text messaged me in the middle of the night, making completely untrue statements about me and about what you think I’m doing…picking a fight, telling me how much you love me…emoting all over me…all because you think you know something about me…you know nothing

Yeah, you knew my habits, my quirks, my likes and dislikes…12 years is a long time together…but did you ever know me?  The thing about me you still hate more than anything is my sarcasm…my sarcastic nature is as a part of me as my brown eyes, dude…it’s who I am, but you hated it…you didn’t know me then, and you sure as hell don’t know me now…

You don’t understand why I’m always angry with you, either…I can’t talk to you – because it will turn into 20 text messages at midnight (which I will ignore – you have figured that out, right?)…you don’t ask about your own children, which pisses me off and makes me ache for them…I believe you love them…but I don’t get you…and unfortunately, most days, I don’t like you…

You have a long way to go with me…and I think you know that…be a father…be consistent…stop freaking out based on assumptions you’re making…STOP telling me about your women problems (I. Do. Not. CARE!)…and stop thinking you know anything about me and This Man…and yeah, I pointed out that I think he’s an excellent father and that I have no problem with him being around the boys for a REASON…when you figure out that reason, you’ll finally be moving in the right direction…

Sincerely,
Your tired, worn out, and exasperated Ex

This is what I wish I could have told The Ex a year ago…:

Some Days Are Better Than Others…This Wasn’t One of Them

I don’t know how I managed to keep my game face on today, but I did…I wanted to cry at 10am, and it was 10pm before I let it go…

The hits kept coming all day…typical stuff, random stuff, stuff that probably isn’t that big a deal, but felt bigger because of my mood…

I should probably discuss the details, get it out of my system…but I don’t want to…some stuff doesn’t have to live on the internet forever…and it doesn’t really matter…I believe the technical term is “same shit, different day.”

There are rare moments, today was one of them, when I wonder if I wouldn’t have been better off staying married…sometimes it just seems too hard…sometimes the number of changes and adjustments are too many and too overwhelming…my heart immediately rejects that notion, though…because I want something better than I had in my marriage…and before someone who doesn’t know offers a lecture, I worked damn hard on my marriage for years before I was strong enough to walk away…

I want something I didn’t believe in when I was married…I want the freaking fairy tale…I want the man who gets me and doesn’t run screaming…I want to have someone I trust enough to lean on…I want the man who understands I don’t lean easily but makes me…I want to be romanced…I want to be loved…I want to be brought back down to earth when I get too nuts and I want to be lifted up when I get too down…

I got sucked into an episode of Say Yes to the Dress…that didn’t help…but I know if I ever get remarried, I will get the freaking fairy tale dress, and I dare anyone to try and tell me no…

On the bright side (because there’s always a bright side), I did not emotionally eat my way through this day…

Empty and Hollow

I know, I know, where the hell have I been lately? The simple answer is that I’ve been hiding…

I haven’t had anything positive or reassuring to say, and I didn’t feel like clogging up the world with more…blah…

I’ve been a person I vaguely recognize and don’t like…and no amount of pep talks, positive thinking, or looking for a silver lining has changed it…I’m sluggish, I’m low-energy, I’m dull (and I don’t mean I’m boring)…I just don’t care…my house is a wreck…my diet is bordering on disgusting…my ass is spreading…and yes, I know, this is “normal,” this is something that other people go through, this is temporary…something feels different…

I tend to live in my head…being single, introverted, and sort of hermit-like (mostly because of circumstances beyond my control), means that I’m in my head more often than not…under normal circumstances my very vivid imagination tends to take over…I’m usually filled with hopes, plans, goals, wants, desires…right now? Nothing…it’s quiet…

I’m not sure when something shifted, but I know how…I know the stages…first I was normal (well, as normal as I get…), then came the overwhelming stress (about the typical stuff), but instead of moving out of it like I usually do, I got stuck…and it deepened…I cried which normally breaks the cycle…I woke up the next day and felt…nothing…numb is the best word I can think of…

I’ve been almost clinical while I’ve tried to figure out what’s wrong…until I just stop caring again…on my way home tonight, I finally figured out how to describe how I feel…empty…hollow…when it gets bad, add in hopeless…when I start thinking about the why, it’s the same damn list it always is, so why bother thinking anymore about it…

Sometimes I feel like my wings have been clipped (yeah, it sounds a little dramatic, I know)…I can’t come and go…and I don’t mean without the boys, this isn’t about needing some time for myself…BBFF had emergency surgery on Monday, and even though I had the time to go, I couldn’t get to him…and as bad as that felt, my mind went immediately to my mom…what if something happened to her? How in the hell would I get to her? Both my mom and BBFF live in the same basic area…it’s a fair comparison…in an emergency what in the hell do I do? I’m not even self-sufficient enough to travel 2 hours…

And the moment I admit that, I feel stupid for considering it a problem…there are so many more people in this world with real problems…why am I complaining, what right do I have? Which starts another ridiculous cycle of negativity…but I’d almost take the negative because it’s something…it’s a feeling, an emotion…

Maybe I’m overwhelmed by own stress…maybe it’s a self-preservation thing…maybe my brain can only take so much…

Big Brother told me I need a plan…I’m afraid to plan, to dream…I can’t imagine how I can achieve it…and then it hurts too much to worry about it…it’s just easier not to…

I miss me…my normal self…I can’t even fake being badass…it takes too much energy…

The worst part is the silence in my own head…normally, I have a million thoughts running through my mind…planning, working, figuring. I hate the silence…it’s crushing…it’s empty and hollow…it’s not the me I like.

A Good Cry

I have a few friends who firmly believe in the validity of having a good cry…be shocked, those friends are female…right now I believe in the necessity of it, too…except…

Except, I can’t…I need to…I almost want to…I have a lot of pent-up emotions…stress, disappointment, residual tension from other people, you name it…I can feel the tears, but I can’t let go of them…

I don’t know if it’s because of some control factor…or if it’s because my dad taught me not to cry too much…”Stop crying or I’ll give you something to cry about!” As an adult, I see the irony of that statement…and as a kid, I hated it…but I do feel like I need a “reason” to cry…I guess emotional release just isn’t one of them…

Nothing much is going on…but it has been a long week of work and travel…and it was a good week…its the same stresses that are always there, but today, for whatever reason, my emotions have come right to the surface…I wish I could just let go of them…

The Ex watched the boys while I was out of town, and I’m guessing it was a long 5 days, because he was ready to go very shortly after we met up with one another…and something about that bothered me…not that he was leaving quickly or that he was leaving at all…but I don’t think I was ready to step back in the role of single parent…not that not being ready matters…you do what you have to do…but I didn’t feel good, I was tired, and I was overly emotional…thankfully the boys decided to behave themselves…

BBFF said something a few weeks ago that got my attention…he said that instead of being someone who wants to prove to the world that I can handle it all on my own, I am finally in the mindset of having a relationship with someone who can be a partner…he’s probably right (he usually is)…too bad I can’t just twitch my nose and make that happen…even though if twitching my nose made things happen, I’ve got a few things on my list that would take priority over a relationship…

I left the stresses and pressures of real life behind for a few days and had the luxury of concentrating solely on work…I came home to the exact same pressures and stresses…and I guess I wasn’t prepared…I wish that whole crying thing worked…

It Could Be Worse

I tell myself, and others remind me all the time, that it could be worse…I know that’s supposed to be comforting, but it mostly just scares the crap out of me…you mean, the situation could get worse??

I am a single mom with no help from The Ex…so without looking at a single bank statement, you know I’m one of those “working poor” that politicians keep talking about (and no, I’m not making any political statements)…I work…I have a good job…compared to people with real problems, I’m a freaking millionaire…

This isn’t a re-hash of my money stresses…it’s a given that someone in my situation is broke…what has me upset today (as opposed to any other day) is that even though I am fully aware of my situation, I get really angry when I have to ask for help…I won’t ask for help for myself unless it’s huge (Bubba not working correctly was huge)…but I can go without…and in some cases, so can the boys…

As long as necessities are taken care of, the extras are just that – extra…but I get so tired of saying no all the time…and of explaining that I can’t afford that…or suggesting that they ask Santa (even though I know damn well Santa isn’t bringing that toy)…so today I reached out and asked for help…and now Aidan will get to go on a field trip (2 actually)…and he’ll get to play basketball in January…

What bothers me is the blow to my pride when I ask for help…and I can hear people now…this isn’t about pride…I shouldn’t worry about my pride…pride doesn’t matter when it’s your children…I know all of that…but when you don’t have much else, sometimes pride and dignity are all that you have…I have a lot more than most people…I recognize that…I have a safe place to live…I have lights, heat, running water, and food…there are people in my own town that don’t have that…I am lucky…no one has to tell me that…

It could be worse, and that’s what scares me…

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