Friday, March 13, 2009

Knowing and Realizing

Knowing and Realizing are two different things.

When I got that phone call from my oldest son that sunny afternoon in January I knew my life was about to change. When February unfolded I knew things were going to be very different for me. When my ex's illness because apparent I knew I was going to have to make a new home for myself. When my kids moved in with me I knew my days as a bachelor were over.

Today the realization hit. As I said, knowing and realizing are two different things.

I now go grocery shopping on Friday nights. Yes....its a thrilling activity but it has to be done sometime. My kids stay with a friend while I get enough groceries to supply the Normandy invasion. Its also time I need to think about things other than mortgages or whose turn is it to play the Wii.

I whipped through the store, loaded up the car, and sat. For forty five minutes.

It hit me. I am on an island here.

Think a rocky outcropping. In November. Under a steel gray ski.

I am on my own with this. No co-parent. No partner. Nuthin.


So after staring into the abyss for about five minutes, I took an inventory. While my oldest son insists that we still need an xbox360, the logistics of my kids' lives have been resolved for now, I also know that the fallout from what has happened to them is coming. I am already worried about my daughter. Heck, I even tried turning to a practical stranger for some help with her. My oldest son is still decompressing. My younger son...well...while he spends much of his time in a bubble, his time is coming too.

As for me....well...yes...I am on an island. I wish it weren't so but there is is. I realize that for this to work the following has to happen; I need a long term plan for my kids (which I am working on) and I need to find a way to hammer out a space for me in all of this. While I don't expect to be able to come and go as I once could, I need to find some way, some place to recharge. Right now I have no clue as to how to do this...I need to work on this as well.

I guess this is a challenge that a lot of single parents face. I see many single parents either submerge themselves entirely into their kids lives or they spend their time fending off their children. Neither option appeals to me. I think this happens because they cannot find a way to have a bit of space for themselves. Either fear of venturing out beyond their children or a refusal (or inability) to imagine something different from the life they have created for their families keep them from having a bit of their lives for themselves. Names and faces of people I know are flooding into my mind now who fit easily into either category. There has to be another way.

I know that if I am to have any joie de vive and live a life that has any style there needs to be room for me in this equation. My kids will be better for it and so will I. Besides, I need to be able to turn this island of ours into a tropical one.....

1 comment:

  1. You are already a great Dad so what more do your kids need? Your island is great! Join the ranks of the Friday night grocery shoppers! They don't serve martinis there but those can be made after the kids go to bed. lol

    Rock on Tom