Collateral Damage

When your kids are sad – and I don’t mean mad or annoyed – but downright sad, it breaks your heart in a way you can’t even explain. You feel like your whole body is lead. Just heavy and dull and blah. Your brain kinda fogs up and you can’t think straight.

I’ve been in a bit of a funk since my little She-ra (7 yr old) had a difficult time the other night when I dropped her off at Daddy’s (aka Grayheart’s) house. She didn’t want to be there, didn’t want to leave me, etc. She does this frequently. Not as much lately but I figure that coming off of the weekend with me was certainly not going to have her want to leave her cozy home to start the weekend with him. (My almost 4 yr old son, though, has no issues.)

So I always leave feeling crummy. She clings to me and cries and begs. And it sucks. 

She usually gets over it soon thereafter and Grayheart normally texts me to let me know all is good. 

But this time she took a bit longer to recover. She wailed to him how unfair this whole set up is. She wanted to be at her home. Not his

So he patiently listened to her as she complained that the divorce is the cause of him not being at home. And that she doesn’t understand it, doesn’t like it and wishes he’d just move back in. 

What do you say to that?! I mean, honestly, you respond with the typical explanation: how it’s this way for a reason, blah, blah, blah… but she’s right. Divorce sucks. She’s been put in a position where she has to split her time between the two adults she loves the absolute most. And since she’s 7, she remembers having an intact household. (Whereas my son doesn’t.)

So he talked her through it – and did a nice job, I must admit – and she recovered. But it’s moments like this that just pop out of nowhere – even a year and a half later – that throw you off. That even though they’re “ok” and “doing well”, kids are collateral damage. And that is depressing.

My friend, TheEuphoricIraqiSingleMom, brought up recently the topic of staying in a loveless marriage in regards to a friend of hers. I’ve thought about it before. How much would I be willing to sacrifice to make sure my kids had an intact, whole family? Could I ever get back with Grayheart just for the kids? Could I ever forgive what he’s done to me? Could I pretend I love him just to make sure I could be with my kids all the time? 

And the answer is, I can’t. I don’t see him the same. I don’t love him like I once did. He actually repulses me, in a way. I know I’d never get back with him but sometimes I’m disappointed in myself because it seems selfish. I know from a logical standpoint that I’m being silly, but that little voice loves to taunt me at times. Especially when I have a setback with my kids.

Anyway, darling daughter is fine now and hasn’t brought up any concerns…and seemed to have a lovely weekend with her father. So, I’m guessing this is normal.

Nonetheless, divorce sucks. 

xo

Athena

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Grayheart & Kids in Disney 

For the last several years, my family and I have done the Disney World marathon weekend since we are annual pass holders. I even went last year even though Grayheart and I were estranged.  (I did my first half marathon last year.)

Typically, one of us would do a race while we have the kids do a kids race.

  
This year, the Disney marathon weekend fell on Grayheart’s weekend with the kids. He invited me to join them. I thought about it. And declined. (I’m not that crazy again.)

And then I panicked thinking he would be alone in Disney world with our 3 yr old son and 6 yr old daughter. 

So I told him that I actually preferred that there be another adult with them. Raggedy Ann.

Yup, I actually asked that the woman who was a part of my breakup with my husband to attend Disney World with my kids.

Why? Because another set of eyes would ensure my kids would be properly watched, cared for, help with bathroom breaks and be the even number for any rides. 

And so she joined them this past weekend for it. And I was okay.

  
I didn’t overthink it. Because if I allowed myself to, I’d probably get worked up and upset for no reason.

Instead, I’m grateful my kids had fun and  back in one piece, safe and sound.

 

Disney Kids Race

 
I’m doing good, friends. I’m really coming to peace with my new life. I’m not fully there yet but I’m getting there. 🙂

XO

PS –  It was glorious, though, hearing Grayheart remark that he has no idea how I did it by myself last month because it was exhausting even with two adults watching over them.

Heh! 

Christmas with the kids 

The two week Christmas break from school for the kids (my 3 yr old son & 6 yr old daughter) was split with the first week being with my ex, Grayheart, while the second week was spent with me. 

That first week I traveled to Colorado and came back Christmas Eve. (Captain headed out of town to visit his family for Christmas.) The kids did dinner that evening with me and my family; what we call Noche Buena. Grayheart picked the kids up late that night and they stayed over at his house. They woke Christmas morning at his home. They called me over and I got to watch them open presents there. (Raggedy was out of town visiting her own family.)  

My princess of power

 
Then I took the kids home with me while Grayheart followed behind and had them open gifts at my house. We had a really nice time all together as a family. It was nostalgically nice. Grayheart was pleasant, we chatted in a friendly manner and none of it felt fake. I then took the kids (on my own) to abuela’s house (aka my mom) to then do gift exchanges there. 

 

My little He-man


   
The kids went back to Grayheart’s house late afternoon. Captain drove back and met me at my home so we could celebrate Christmas evening together. We exchanged gifts* and then watched Star Wars at the movies! (Which was amaze-balls!) 

Captain celebrating his new GoPro

 

All things considered, it was a wonderful Christmas! There was lots of positive energy, everyone was cheerful and we did a great job sharing our children. 

*I’m going to gush a second…Captain was amazing! He got me a few books he thought I’d love, a mani/pedi certificate to use on a day he is working, salsa lessons for us to do together, paintball day and archery lessons! He’s paid such close attention to me…it had me in tears. It’s been so long since I’ve been loved like this. And I don’t quite think I’ve ever been loved better.

  
Hope you all enjoyed the holidays! 

(Please excuse the mess in my home! Eek!)

😘

Thanksgiving = Success!

Thanksgiving was a success!

Captain joined us for dinner and he got along soooo well with my family (i.e. my mom, stepfather, sister, grandparents, stepsister, etc.)! My kids (3 & 6) really like him so it was nice to have my family see them in action.

And because Captain’s a gentleman, he brought over 5 lbs of Florida stone crabs, corn and a case of beer. 😉 Major brownie points scored!

  
 

Captain & kids husking corn together

 

Grayheart came by during dessert. They finally officially met. They shook hands hello then Grayheart went over to chat with the kids. He lasted about 15-20 minutes at the house and then said adios  to everyone. (He shook hands with Captain goodbye and said he’d see him down the road.)

Mom’s famous flan!

 
It was awkward but nothing went awry. It was weird having them both at my my mom’s house yet Grayheart was now an outsider. Made me feel kind of bad for him, to be honest. (Not that I should, I mean, Grayheart chose this life. Captain came aboard way after we separated.)

This was my motto on Thanksgiving!

Nonetheless, dinner was delicious, conversation flowed wonderfully and it really felt like a happy Thanksgiving with the people I love the most.

Makes me excited for Christmas! 🌲

xoxo

Today’s Motto:  

Tenth Anniversary

Today is my 10th anniversary. 

The traditional gift for your tenth anniversary is aluminum. He can have this foil ball as my present to his dumb ass.

Grayheart and I were discussing some things over the phone about the kids. He looked at the calendar and remarked, “Oh! Happy anniversary!”

He thought he was funny.

So I responded, “Yes! I’m so glad we made it to ten years!” in a completely fake sugary sweet cheerleader voice. 

He didn’t think it was funny anymore.

Asshole.

  
What do I feel today?

Strangely nothing. 

But I sure as hell haven’t forgotten he started screwing Raggedy Ann on our anniversary last year. 

But no pain. No sadness. Just nothing

So tonight I’m celebrating my freedom with one of my best friends that’s known me a hella long time.

Here’s to Throwback Thursday! 

Salud! 🍷🍸🍺

XO

When you almost run into your ex-husband’s mistress turned girlfriend 

I had a bit of an awkward situation last night.

Normally, my arrangement with Grayheart is that I drop off the kids to him and he brings them back to me. We’ve read in a few books that it’s easier on kids to not feel like they’re being “taken” from their parent’s house by the other parent.

Last night we switched it up because I was coming home from dinner and thought it’d be easier to pick them up on my way home. I asked him to bathe our youngest (He-man, my 3 yr old son) so I didn’t have to deal with it when I got home. 

Somehow he misunderstood. So when I arrived, little He-man had not been bathed. I was visibly annoyed so Grayheart offered to bathe him quickly. I waited in the living room. She-ra, my 6 yr old daughter, then exclaims “Mami! Why don’t you meet Raggedy Ann! I want to introduce you to her! She’s upstairs!”

WHAT THE FUCK?!

So I calmly, coolly and tauntingly said out loud “Why yes! Why doesn’t she come down so we can meet?”

  
Grayheart bolted over and pleaded with me to please not put She-ra in the middle of the situation and drop it.

I took a look at my innocent daughter who was excited for introductions and decided to drop it. I said I would meet her at another time since she was probably in the bathroom.

I was pissed!

I don’t know what I would’ve done. A million things went through my mind.

  1. She’s a freaking wimp. No one would ever have me hiding.
  2. I’m glad the bitch is scared of me.
  3. I’m going to punch her once in the face. Just one knock out.
  4. Do I smile and pretend to be pleased to meet her in front of the kids?
  5. Do I threaten to kick her ass at a later time?
  6. Do I call her a whore or a skank?
  7. Should I roundhouse kick her?
  8. Which eye should I spit in?
  9. Do I thank her for taking him off my hands and congratulate her for having my sloppy seconds? He’s your problem now, bitch!
  10. Do I run up the stairs and further I intimidate her?
  11. Should I walk out the door and wait in the car? (Hell no!)
  12. I’m going to take my sweet ass time in his house and walk around like o own the place.

Once I quickly recovered from my shock, I hissed at him “You have your fucking girlfriend here?!” 

You know what his response was? To put it back on me! “You never asked.”, he said deadpan. (So typical for him to immediately respond with a way to blame me when backed into a corner.) And then he realized how dumb he sounded and apologized. I never go inside his house and, of course, this time I did. He didn’t think and didn’t know what to do. 

I was seething. But I held myself together and waited patiently in the living room for the kids. 

  
It was awkward, to say the least. But then it got me thinking… I will meet her eventually. She’s around my kids and our paths will cross. How do I handle that first time we do meet?

I hate Grayheart for giving me this headache. How am I supposed to treat a woman that was complicit in the breakup of our marriage? (Yes, I know I’m better off. Yes, I know it’s him that I’m to hold responsible. Yes, I know we had issues before her.) But, realistically, she is a weasel and disrespected me and my family. I can’t just let her think I’m a doormat and okay with that kind of crap! 

I know I’ll get over it and eventually have no feelings towards her. But this is now. And I don’t think I’m a big enough person at this point to turn the other cheek.
Suggestions are welcome! I’d love to hear how you may have handled it if you’ve ever been in the situation! Did I do the right thing last night?

As a slightly funny thing, as I was waiting in the foyer, I noticed her flip flops by the front mat. I was going to kick them outside the front door since it was raining and they’d get soaked. Yes. Total third grade behavior but it was that kind of moment. As I started to, Grayheart walked out and I quickly acted like nothing happened and was unable to fully complete my immature stunt. Hmpf! 

Today’s mantra: Take it easy. You leave to the Caribbean tomorrow for your bff’s wedding. Let it go! (And how awesome there is a rainbow today?!)

  

Humble pie

I mentioned before that I’ve been a bit angry and down about my divorce lately. I think since we are winding down to the end of it, it just sinks in just how much hurt I still have in my heart. I am still bitter that Grayheart continues his relationship with Raggedy Ann. I want to get past it but it’s hard. I’m working on it, though. 

The terse relationship between Grayheart really pinnacled yesterday when he snapped and bitched at me when he picked up the kids. We went at it with them as audience and, of course, it really stressed out She-ra. We are usually really good about keeping the peace in front of the kids. We did bad. And I was inconsolable when they left.

I finally decided to call for a truce. The tension and stress is eating away at me. I hate having a contentious relationship with him and I know I started this latest battle. (Mind you, I feel like he started the war.)

So I sent him this text message last night:

 

Text to Grayheart


And it was well received. He responded with:

“I just read your texts. Truce sounds good. Sorry I snapped at you. We can talk tomorrow.”
Sometimes it takes a bite of humble pie for the right outcome. I instantly felt lighter after I sent the email and even better once the response was positive. I hope we can continue on a good foot. At least it’s a start.

Weekend is here so I’m going to enjoy it. It’s Friday Night Fun for me tonight! Captain is off on a tournament so I’ll be partying it up with the ladies tonight. 

Have a fabulous weekend, mi gente! Besitos!

Today’s Mantra: Humility can often reap you the greatest rewards.