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Sitting at my actual desk for a change

October 12, 2010

I’ve been conspicuously absent from this blog (and from my own blog) for the last week. A long work trip the week before that was somehow much harder than most trips are, plus too much work plus going to my high school reunion have sucked my brain and energy out.

I do not know how anyone can do this if they couldn’t trust their children’s other parent, or if they were trying to hurt each other.

I’m really, really concerned that we’re going to come off sounding smug about how we’re doing with each other and how we co-parent. Because it’s not one big warm fuzzy. We frustrate each other, and the basic reasons we got divorced are all still there and that makes the phone reeeeeally heavy sometimes when I have to pick it up to send LOD a text about something.

But I keep hearing stories–I heard tons of them at my reunion last weekend–that make me feel so thoroughly lucky to be co-parenting with someone who is a good dad and who understands that being a good dad is facilitating my being a good mom. It doesn’t matter if we ever get to be friends again, because just the act of NOT trying to drop anvils on each other seems to be a miracle. And it’s what I hoped for when we were in the process of splitting up, but wasn’t sure would happen.

And now I get my kids for the rest of the week! Tonight: Cowboy Supper and homemade brownies (Katharine Hepburn’s recipe). Tomorrow morning: Both kids will remember their backpacks for school! Rest of the week: Come up with dinners from the sad little Venn diagram of foods both children will eat.

9 Comments leave one →
  1. I'm Next permalink
    October 12, 2010 1:40 pm

    I don’t think you’re smug and it doesn’t appear all fuzzy.

    You are providing an excellent dose of reality as I see my life just starting to unfold in front of me (I just got the initial divorce petition last week).

    We’re gonna try to not drop anvils. We met a counselor today to discuss custody and the counselor seemed relieved that we only had one attorney and we were already committed to co-parenting. She said we were in the minority, for most parents it’s not even a possibility. But the upside is all for our daughter.

    The reunion story is interesting but I think the ultimate test is what will my daughter think? Is she relaxed, does she feel no stress, does she feel she has access and flexibility with both parents and can continue to operate seamlessly with either one as she can today? Can we do that?

    Thanks for sharing and for being honest; I appreciate the opportunity to learn from your successes and mistakes.

  2. jen permalink
    October 12, 2010 2:25 pm

    love the Katherine Hepburn brownies, love the Laurie Colwin essays…I agree, you don’t sound smug. You both sound gracious, which is a nice thing to be and a nice goal to have.

  3. October 12, 2010 3:06 pm

    Venn diagrams. Fantastic!

  4. Heather permalink
    October 12, 2010 4:03 pm

    God, I soooo ID with this post…especially the last part…we keep losing homework between houses. And for some nasty reason, I feel that 3 people (me, 2 kids) just aren’t enough to make a real meal for….I forced myself to make chicken and dumplings two nites ago, then took a to-go container to my ex.. What the heck do I feed these guys and myself? Can someone please tell me….!

  5. LOD permalink*
    October 12, 2010 4:55 pm

    I want to know more about those reunion disaster stories. What can you say without saying anything?

  6. October 12, 2010 5:12 pm

    I am with you. Not that my divorce (final on Thursday) has been all amazing or anything…but each day, I’m grateful that we’ve done really well by our kids.

    I hear the horror stories too and it makes me so sad.

  7. Maria permalink
    October 12, 2010 8:04 pm

    You don’t sound smug, but you do sound lucky. Not lucky to have gotten divorced, because there’s no universe in which that doesn’t suck, but oh so lucky to have a working parenting relationship – but I doubt it’s luck. You both work at it, pick up the 20 lb. phone when you need to text, are willing to trust and be trusted for the sake of your kids. Good job!

  8. October 13, 2010 5:44 am

    It sounds to me from this blog that while you recognize you’re not a good married couple, you still have respect for each other. I think that’s important in a successful co-parenting situation.

    There are a ton of reasons why I don’t like my ex anymore, but deep down, I know he’s a good guy, a caring dad, and has good intentions. It goes a long way in the trust department.

  9. BratGrrl permalink
    October 16, 2010 2:00 am

    “Come up with dinners from the sad little Venn diagram of foods both children will eat.” Hahahahaha! That made me laugh out loud. Hard. Stopped myself because that couple downstairs knows I’m alone up here.

    But alas, that is my struggle, too, and I only have one appetite to appease. I miss my munchkin so much when she’s not here — but that’s one thing that I don’t miss when she’s off at Daddy’s a few nights out of the week. Makes me feel kind of guilty.

    She says he gives her hot dogs for dinner all the time — his girlfriend is not a cook — and one day last week I noticed that he gave her a nachos Lunchable to get her through the school day. No morning or afternoon snacks. Just tiny roundish chips and gluey factory “cheese.” She only ate the cheese. He’s normally a very good dad, but I have to say, I hate that. I’m about to suggest he send her to school with a couple of bucks for the dreaded school lunch.

    I think it’s going to be one of those texts where my phone feels like an anvil.

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