Thursday morning I was a bit of a mess, a long sleepless night which followed a particularly difficult Wednesday evening with my ex-wife. Wednesday evening is the the night I get to spend a bit of time with my children so this tough time was unfortunate as it ruined the evening a bit.
I got upset, very upset, and was trying to work out different arrangements for me to see the children which would keep me happy and them happy. My son and I are close, but I sometimes don’t feel that same way about my daughter and I. I’ve known T for 3 years I guess and while he cuddles me sometimes there’s nowhere for K to go, so she goes over to mummy. When K needs a ‘duddle’ she goes to mummy, rarely to me.
I get out books and invite them both to sit on my lap on the floor. T leaps on one knee while K refuses to do so. But when T’s in bed she’ll hop on and ask me to read. Often choosing the book herself. What The Lady Bird Heard and a terrifying story involving Fireman Sam and a birthday cake which almost sets a house on fire are her current favourites.
So I was thinking. Things have got to change. I used to be with the children 24/7 but now I’m with them one day at a weekend and for one hour on a Wednesday night. Something’s gotta change. It has to. But how. How how how? I was thinking, thinking, desperately thinking and then my head exploded.
Not literally, my head didn’t actually explode, but everything, all this unexpected emotion suddenly came on top of me, flooding me and taking over. I cried, I wailed and howled. It was not pretty. I was tired as I’d not been asleep all night, but this wasn’t tiredness or exhaustion.
It was grief.
If you’ve ever suffere grief, by losing someone close to you, I don’t know if I can say ‘it was like that’ because everyone’s experiences and stories are different. So I can’t compare. But I know that was what I was going through.
Grieving a lost life, a lost job as a SAHD, a lost marriage and a lost relationship. At times my ex-wife and I just can’t talk to each other. How did it all come to this?
I was grieving as I’d realised that all that was before was dead and gone. And I hadn’t buried it. I hadn’t heard the eulogy, and we didn’t have sandwiches at the wake afterwards. There were no flowers and no-one was going down the pub afterwards for a drink and a talk about the good times and the good memories.
I let it hit me. I let it wash over me. I let the flood sweep me away for about twenty minutes and then it was done. I sat there and realised that that, feeling like this, was allowed, it was valid, and that this is a process I have to go through and maybe should’ve gone through already. Not feeling like this before now has stopped me a bit from moving on. I was clinging to something that was gone. Forever.
So, I pulled myself up, blew my nose, wiped my eyes and got the mop out to clear the puddles of tears from the kitchen floor. I told myself life is going to be different. I told myself and reassured myself that I can adapt to this. I can accept these changes and move forward. I can do things better, be a better parent and a better man. Now the flood has gone. Now I’ve grieved.
So, RIP my old life. It was a good one and I have lots of great memories. But I can’t think about this for too long right now as I’m in the delivery suite and my new life has just been born. And it looks great.
We all cope in different ways I guess and I’ve just realised I’m stronger than I ever thought I was. So what, life’s not perfect right now, is it ever? But one thing I know is that I’m going to try my best to enjoy it.
So, if I ever tweet anything negative or which smacks of abject misery then you have my permission to punch me VERY HARD in the face. I may blog about things occasionally, but only when I need to. And because it helps.
So, onwards and upwards eh? Here’s to Life v2.0.
Thanks for reading.