Thursday, January 22, 2009

The New Life

I realized today that this series is getting a bit bogged down. The narrative wasn't supposed to be a day-to-day recounting of everything that happened.

Suffice to say that my life began to move forward from that point. When you're faced with this situation, you have two choices: you let go and begin moving forward, or you spend all your time lamenting what has been. I could not lock into the past. No one would benefit by me trying to change or undo everything that had taken place.

I was determined to be a good father. I had found myself falling into a very unattractive stereotype. I had finally begun to achieve some success in my career; I had separated myself somewhat from the Pack down there on Wall Street. I was making good money, and yet, here I was: start getting successful, leave your marriage and family in the past.

I was absolutely hell-bent on not living that stereotype. Let me say here, right now, that I was in a situation that I did not ask for. That's not to say it wasn't my fault, or that I wasn't partially responsible for what took place. But I didn't want my life to be this way. I fought long and hard to keep it together. But truth be told, you cannot make someone love you. You cannot make someone want to be with you. It is what it is. Live with it and deal with it and make the best of it.

I furnished my apartment with the help of some good friends. I had some nice sleeping arrangements for the kids and me. I had a crib, I had 2 beds. I had a toybox and a big closet for their stuff. Life looked like it was going to start getting better. It's very cool how easy it is to impress kids.

Of course, the world has a sense of humor that I don't always appreciate. As we moved into the summer, my daughter was climbing one of the little apple trees on the property with a bunch of other kids. She lost her balance and fell out, in the process breaking her shoulder. Way to be a good Dad, pal.

It seemed to me that every time I had these children with me in my place, one of them would take sick. I couldn't do anything right. Now I know we can't control those things, but you do kind of think "Could You make it any more difficult?". And you know that she is sitting in judgment of your every move. And you make a lot of bad moves...albeit unwillingly.

But I did find my stride when the smoke cleared. I made it a point to make my home safe, inviting secure and fun. Meals were events with the kids and me. The best way to get the kids to eat right is to make wholesome meals that taste good. And I'm proud to blow my own horn here and say that at least in this area it was mission accomplished. The kids liked it here. My littlest one was very much enamored with the idea of having two homes. Two sets of toys, two special cups, plates and placemats. And I can be fun to play with. I like an excuse to play with toys and games. I felt as though I had clearly established the line between being a parent and being a friend.

Actions speak louder than words. Life was beginning to be good. The kids felt at home in my new home.

But Sunday nights were the worst. That's when they went home to their Mom. You never get used to that.


  1. I'm sure for a father it's hell wathing your kids go back to their mom after having them a few days. Kuddos to you though for making sure you were always in their lives.

  2. No, you wouldn't. They're your kids and that feeling that they should be with you isn't just going to shut up and be quiet.

    But it truly sounds as if you were making the best of a not-so-good situation.

    Kudos to you.

    BTW, I think the way you've written so far has been phenomenal.


  3. I've just read your whole series of postings Jimmy. You've been through so much and come out of it with strength and humour intact. These entries made me so sad, life is never easy but you always seem to find a positive side to things. I've been through a divorce so know what you're talking about. We just make the best of it and carry on. I know your kids love you for being a great dad and friend. Thanks for taking the time to tell us about what makes you the person you are. Jeannette xx New journal

  4. I did the visitation thing for almost 10 years, but recently things blew up. I sure hope your story stays positive.

  5. My comment was going to be that I'd let Ken comment on this...but I see that he already has. I can tell you that he understands quite well what you went through.


  6. Awwww. I was loving all the detailed stories. I hope you don't quit.

    In regard to this post, specifically, it's amazing how assuming what someone else must be thinking about us magnifies everything that happens isn't it?

  7. I like how you put a lot of conscious thought into making your place a safe and happy place for your children. It is obvious they were your number 1 priority (and still are). A lot of people talk the talk on that but you walked the walk!!


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