Today was L1s second day of first grade. He is not enjoying it so far, but apparently they are “just learning rules I already know. You should be able to raise your hands and have extra recess if you remember them all” 🙄 but I’m sure it will get better.
Yesterday I was able to take him to his classroom, get him settled for his first day, and then head into work a little late. I’m so thankful to have this flexibility. The kids who wandered the halls alone on day one made me sad, so I appreciate my ability to not miss out on much.
When we started K last year, I was SO thankful to be in a bigger school with diverse families. We were finally not the only divorced family! And L1 quickly registered that. Within the first week he found two friends that only live with either their mom or Dad. Funny enough, I actually briefly dated a guy, and then our kids ended up in kindergarten together. Now I get to awkwardly see him at all school functions. Won’t make that mistake again.
Back to yesterday, the first day of 1st grade, as I’m walking hand in hand with L1 down the hall, I see that guy I dated. My first thought was “oh, hey. I kind of forgot he existed” but then I see right beside him his ex wife is carrying their younger son. I know her only from pickup and our kids talking, but she seems very nice, so I smile every time. They have clearly just dropped off their 1st grade son together. Adorable right!? A family that can still get along on days like that. But instead I got instantly pissed because L1 (and L2) will NEVER have that. He will never have a Dad show up for father’s type events at school. He will never have his Dad coach his little league team. He will never have both parents there for an awards ceremony, or to celebrate an accomplishment, the first or last day of school or to just simply raise him. He just won’t. And almost everyone else does.
I felt alienated again. I feel like I have failed as a parent because I made my son grow up in not only a divorced family, but a divorced military family. So Dad is out there saving the country, and I’m here being good cop AND bad cop. Dad can’t be around. And honestly if he could, I don’t think he would be. This is MY city. Who really suffers? Well, my kids don’t seem to notice or care, so I guess just me at this point. But I can’t help but wonder how different their lives would be if they had a more consistent role model.
I’m not that great at throwing the ball around with them, but I do try to make an effort. L1 says he is more creative than an athlete, but is that because of my failings in making him play with me more? I can’t keep my eye on both kids while teaching L1 to ride a bike, so he still isn’t great at that. 100% my fault that he hasn’t mastered it, since a year ago he could at least do it. All these things are consistently on my mind about what they could be if they had someone to teach them. Sure, friends and family tell me all the time “I’ll come do these things with them,” but between their actual desire to do it, or my lack of following up when it would be a great idea, it almost never happens.
I have settled with club sports and committing myself to whatever L1 wants to do so that he at least has exposure. Not sure what is going to happen when they are both ready for sports and mommy can’t be in two places at once, but we will figure it out.
Anyway-My ex text me tonight to ask how the first day went. Well, it was the second day, AND WHY CAN’T YOU HAVE A PREPLANNED FACETIME DATE WITH YOUR SON SET FOR YESTERDAY TO ASK THESE THINGS YOURSELF?! It is infuriating.
I’m just rambling about things at this point. I need to vent, and my kids aren’t the right audience. I am so beyond thankful that my children are mine and they are so happy. No matter what they do or become, I will be so proud of them, and likely always have this badass feeling of like “I did that shit on my own.” All you Moms with all the help from your husband or in town ex husbands can’t say that! 😂
Cheers to all you parents raising your babies. Because this stuff isn’t easy, alone or married. And you deserve a drink every so often for successfully keeping them alive each day!
❤ MS Andrea Jackson