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12:57 p.m. - 2011-12-22
And Afterward...

Please see previous entry about all the good news (if you haven't already) and you'll understand why I'm more emotional and scattered than usual. My brain is pinging around inside my skull like a pinball. I have to keep stopping to wipe off my glasses, tears, tears, and more tears. Good tears mostly, but happy tears smear up my specs just as much as sad hurty ones do.

Mick said something very sweet yesterday. See, a few weeks ago when we got the definite court date I demanded a moratorium on speaking about the ex. I couldn't stand it anymore. Mick just kept digging and grinding on and on about him, demanding answers I didn't have about why the ex does what he does, bitching about the ex and his mess and what is he thinking??? And what and why and how could he and, and, get it. I finally blew up and said I was sick of Mick's relentless bitching and snarling about the ex and his motives. I'd done more talking about the man since I met Mick than I had for all of my marriage to the guy. I didn't CARE why or what he did! I didn't want his skanky self in my house anymore, in my ears, at my table, I was sick of the ex being the first thing Mick talked about every moring and the last thing at night and was 70% of the conversation in between. ENOUGH. For good or ill, the court date was set and nothing we said or did in the meantime was going to change a fricken shut up already.

It was tough for Mick for the first couple days but then he got it. He saw how nice it was without his obsessive and futile carping about the guy. Mick started to appreciate the pleasant atmosphere and was amazed by how much else there was to talk about. So yesterday after we left the courthouse and were on our way home from our celebratory breakfast at the diner Mick told me he was still honoring the moratorium. Whether the ex lived up to the court order or not, Mick wasn't going to go on and on about the guy. Mick got it. He truly got why I'd insisted on the gag order and was in total agreement about how much nicer life was now.

So that was one of the day's Good Things.

At dinner we filled Wolf in on what the judge had ordered and what the consequences are for his father's non-compliance. Didn't want it to come out of the blue if his asshole dad ended up at the county's stone hotel. I haven't dragged my son through all the ins and outs of this ugly mess, but have kept him up to speed on what I've felt was an appropriate level of information. Wolf is 14 and well-able to handle some of the less savory aspects of his dimwit father's way of going on. A very recent thing, when Wolf was younger I bent over backwards to not make him a monkey-in-the-middle or to hold his old man up as the villain he really is. I had too much of that crap in my own childhood and understood how dismaying it was to a kid. So. As far as Wolf knew his parents' divorce was just a sad thing that happened because we'd married too young and nobody was enemies with anybody. Wolf had free access to his father and was unburdened by any bitter freight from me. But when Mike put the house (Wolf's home!) in danger and completely abdicated any financial responsibility to his son, and then went even deeper and began putting Wolf's physical safety at risk with his crappy vehicle and careless way of going on I had to say something to my child. Even then I never burdened Wolf with any of the ugly stuff from the marriage, or what his father was truly like. Everything was couched in terms of a lack of responsibility about money and Wolf's safety, and that if we had to suddenly move he should understand that Mick and I would make sure he'd have a good home in another place. The mess his father had made was sad and unfortunate but Wolf had to know about it just in case it went really, really bad.

I haven't protected the ex for his sake, I've done it for Wolf. I know from bitter experience that when your father says you don't mean anything to him and shows you by disappearing and/or not paying child support, when he leaves you twisting in the wind and wanting for even the basics, when he drops in out of the blue with some dopey gift you never wanted and shows he doesn't know squat about who you really are and then takes off again for weeks, months, years, or in my case- fucks you up. And I would spare my son that. Even if it meant until very recently I had to keep quiet, hush Mick, and send Wolf off to visit his father and do it with a smile and a big happy, "Have fun, sweetie!"

I'm not pinning medals on myself here. Just the fact I had to work so hard and long to spare my son this grief is disgusting to me. How any man can stand in the mirror to shave his face and not see the feckless hurtful coward he is looking back at him and not KNOW what a shitty father and human being he is, well, it makes me puke. Alex never knew the awful crap about his father that I shielded him from. And that I ended up being the bad guy in Alex's eyes, it sucks but I'd do it again anyhow. Alex is doing okay for himself these days. Whatever life skills he has, the relative comfort and safety he had during his growing up years, the good homes, the compliments, the music lessons, the college degree, none of those things would have happened if Mike had been at the helm. That horrible, incompetent, unloving jerkwad I was dopey enough to make two children with was never allowed to damage my kids if I could help it. I was luckier with Wolf in that I got out from under Mike and his miserable shitty ways and was able to do for myself and be okay as I hadn't been during Alex's childhood. I can be a better mother to my younger son than I was with my elder one. And I'm grateful for this.

I'm grateful for one other thing too. Yesterday's relief and good news via the court, and Mick's loving support and kindness, the way the new Christmas tree went up so easy and looks so great, the solstice toasts during the pizza dinner, all of those are good but pale in comparison to what Wolf told me as we finished up our pizza. In English class they'd had to write an essay about their hero and Wolf had chosen me. He wrote about me.

I am Wolf's hero.

Damn, I have to clean my glasses again. ~LA

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