Sunday, August 12, 2012

Wanting What I Have

So, Friday night turned out fine (and there was great rejoicing). I don't know whether my ex said anything to the kids or not, but they'd forgotten all about the whole let's-celebrate-your-anniversary thing. Thank God. We had dinner, the kids asked if we would play a round of Uno, which we did, and then I went home, relieved, and had a beer.

Mmmmm, beer.

Every now and then things happen that remind me why I wanted to get divorced in the first place, and this was certainly one of them. I wouldn't want anyone reading my blog to think that I am in any way conflicted about my ex. I try to focus on his good points because I have to co-parent with him, and because people who know us both read my blog, and because nobody likes a ranting harpy. I like to think he would do the same for me. But I'm glad to be out of the marriage.

What I am conflicted about is that I made a choice to escape a situation that, for me, was intolerable, and that choice means that neither I nor my children will have the kind of family life I'd planned for us. I am happy every day, but it isn't what I'd wanted, and I'm experiencing it as a loss, and I can't help but feel guilty about my children. To compound matters, I'm in love with a man who lives across the continent. We can't share a household or help each other raise our children, so even the idea of a blended family as such a thing is generally portrayed is largely out of reach. It blows.

On the other hand:
  • I am a better mother to my children now that I'm not constantly locked down by anxiety.
  • My kids are resilient, amazing people.
  • I have control over my life, and it feels wonderful.
  • I have a lot more fun, and I am a more fun person.
  • I have a little bit of time to myself, and it's about the right amount. I never got that when I was enabling someone else's agenda all the time.
  • I never have to go freaking camping ever again!
  • I also never have to spend my weekends on exhausting marathon entertainment outings that combined multiple destinations, any one of which could have comprised an entire day (e.g., The zoo! Then a museum! Then a concert! Then a baseball game! I'm not making this up!).
  • I get to visit Southern California more often and eventually may get to live there again.
  • McDreamy and I are planning monthly get-togethers, for the romance and whatnot.
  • Being long-distance is teaching us how to communicate even better, and we have very meaningful conversations. Also silly, funny conversations.
Often, when my kids insist that they want something they can't have, I suggest that they should decide to want something else. They look at me like a crazy person, but I think I make a good point, if I do say so myself. When I look at what I have, it's pretty wonderful. I have a good man, a comfortable home, beautiful, healthy children, and a reasonably balanced lifestyle. Also, beer. Who wouldn't want that?

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