I’m making all of the last minute preparations for my weekend trip! Mia is watching Benjamin (wish her luck). I know they’ll have a ball though. Benjamin absolutely adores Mia and Sydney. And who wouldn’t? As you’ll read in a second, Mia is fast discovering that fact.
I’ll have an update when I get back… in the meantime, please go vote for Matt Logelin in the 2009 Bloggies. He’s up for Best Topical Blog.
For my new readers:
My best friend Mia recently found out that her boyfriend of 6 years and the father of her daughter is leaving, the catalyst is an affair with another woman. Here’s Part II of her story.
I am realizing that things are changing, along with the rise of my spirit.
Like roaches, I will notice things in the house that belong to him – shaving cream still in the shower, or his ugly computer chair. And before I know it his things seems to be scattered everywhere I look. A random sock in the dryer, his whiskers in the bottom of the drawer on “his” side of the bathroom. It’s like they come out at night and dirty up my clean floors and clutter my counter tops.
I think I have become an exterminator.
Everyday I pitch something or add it to the pile that will be packed, unnoticed by Sydney, into her “daddy bag” when she goes for her two days there (because even though he claims he shouldn’t have to pay me child support because he “buys her clothes too” I always send several outfits with her.)
I am not just spraying for his germs around the house though.
I am hoping to kill off the leftovers on me as well. I repeat, like a mantra in my head, my goal to be his friend so that we can parent to the best of our ability. Although, I have lessened the pressure to do so now – I realize it may take both of us time to heal and pushing it was only making it harder. Especially since he seems to have figured out, over the last four weeks since he moved, exactly how to articulate why it was he couldn’t stay with me – I am controlling he says (something I have never heard him say in over 6 years).
I think he is right.
I think I learned/was forced into a parental role with him. A controlling role. One I resented daily. I became his sounding board for everything in his life. He needed constant approval and reassurance. Always selling his ideas to me with conviction but no confidence. It is a full time job to be a parent to a child. Parenting an adult? Slave labor. So much energy put into him. And the left over? He put into his downtime.
I had lunch with an old friend today (a male, so I know this is not a gender thing) and I realized that the 10 or 15 minutes I talked to him about my job was more than I had discussed my work with my ex in probably two years! In fact, I think this person may understand what I do for a living better than my partner of 6 years did. Because he listened. And I felt listened to – a foreign feeling to me.
How could this be? How could I have not given myself enough credit to know I am more interesting than that?? Instead, I would ask him to ask me about my day. Or even remind him several times where I was when I went out of town for work to avoid the hurt I had felt in the past when he had forgotten. I also forced myself to forget that when we first met I had traveled the world for 6 months and when I asked him to look at my pictures he told me they were from my trip so they didn’t have anything to do with him. (Eventually he looked at some of them, expressing little to no interest about my life prior to him.)
So, he is right.
I made the classic mistake. The one I warn my girlfriends about. I hoped he would change- although I called it “growing up”. But he didn’t – and how could he with me in control? I handled all the tedious things in life, like insurance and dental appointments. I even made all of the travel arrangements for trips I wasn’t invited to go on with him.
So I get it. He wants to take control back. And by leaving me for her that is the ultimate control. My hope is that this decision, however painful for me, helps him to grow up. To take control and turn into a great man. I want Sydney to look at her daddy with admiration.
As for now, it’s spring cleaning time.
Pretty soon when I turn on the lights there will be nothing left to scatter. I will take a deep breath and know that I am in control of exactly who I should be — ME.