Friday, January 09, 2009


What a difference a year makes!

This time a year ago, I was filled with trepidation and incredible uncertainty about what lay ahead, yet I knew that nothing would change my mind from the course I had decided on.

Ending my marriage was the best thing I did all year (and I did some pretty good things last year). I have never regretted it, not for one tiny moment. In fact, as various bits of information came my way over the year, I have had even more reason to know that I made the right decision, for me and the wee man.

It’s been hardest in relation to him, the little guy. He loves his daddy, bless him, and though I know that loving and seeing both parents is good and right and best for his emotional development etc etc blah blah blah, I also know that it is going to bite him in the arse down the track (if you’ll forgive the colloquialism).

His dad is not a very good person, though he tries to convince himself and everyone else that he is. He lets people down, badly, and worst of all those he loves. Self-sabotage is his specialty, which means if you are in his orbit you get hit by the fall-out. His relationship with his other son has already accumulated a critical level of damage, just as the boy enters his teens. He began last year with an opportunity to do it differently with the wee man, to be the person he always claimed he wanted to be, to be the father he wishes he’d had. To a large extent, he has failed.

That’s his journey, their shared journey, and I can only do what I can in terms of being the best parent I can be, and a constant and a comfort to the wee man. The little guy made it a bit hard for me at the beginning of last year, taking his father’s cues and blaming me for the split. He never said so, exactly, but he was angry with me often, and took his father’s line that he could live with him any time literally, and used to threaten me with it whenever he wasn’t getting his way – I didn’t tell him it would have been an empty promise. When he came back after that 2 week holiday/road trip with his Dad in (?) April, things had changed – he had a new appreciation for me, and most of the anger was gone. That made life much easier, because his anger and my unexpressed frustrations and anger and fears were rubbing very badly together, and I was afraid that instead of taking him from danger I was leading him into it. We were both damaged, and there was a point where I worried if the long-term consequences were beyond my control.

Yet, at the back of my mind, I knew that this, too, would pass. After all that we had been through, and with all the other goodness in our lives, we would find a way through these feelings. And in the end, we just did.

So far, this post has focused on the negatives, which was never my intention - there were so many positives to the last year, such a sea-change to my life that I celebrate today.

Returning to myself: living in tune with my beliefs; many small and large achievements in my community work; being able to pick up the phone without fear of drama or debt collectors; running for local government, making choices about where I live and what I wear and where I’m going without having every single thing examined, questioned and misinterpreted; watching my little man grow and blossom and smile and see ME grow and blossom and smile – there is so much that makes this an occasion to be celebrated.

This Christmas was a gift in itself.

Spending time with my family at my mother’s home on the Sunshine Coast was something we had done a few times over the years, including twice in the wee man’s lifetime. Every visit was marred by some kind of drama, and last Christmas was really the final straw for me – 2 weeks later I declared the marriage over, and weathered the blustering, begging, and belligerence until it finally, truly, was over.

Going to Mum’s again enabled us to lay a new track down over the old. We lived a fun, laid-back, loving, drama-free Christmas, such as the wee man has never known in his lifetime yet had always been my experience before being with his father. I can’t tell you how good that makes me feel. Look at the picture – Mum took it on Christmas evening, and it tells you all you need to know .

So, happy anniversary to me. I’d thought of having a little party or drinks with friends, but it did seem somewhat tasteless – ending a marriage is not something I chose to do lightly. Anyway, the real party is in my head and in my heart – I’m the only one who can hear the music, and I’m happily dancing alone.

Xmas happy


•´.¸¸.•¨¯`♥.Trish.♥´¯¨•.¸¸.´• said...

Happy New you .The wee man is going to be a incredible guy one day because of your strength, love and tenacity.

It sounds like you are moving in the right direction and you will go far.

Alison said...

Happy anniversary, and congratulations to you!
Celebrating the anniversary doesn't have to mean celebrating the end of a marriage, either. I see it more as celebrating the positive changes of the year gone, and the newer, brighter and changed future :-)
I admire your courage, especially making it through the anger with your little guy. That must have been so gut wrenching and terrifying at the time.

mountainmama said...

Thanks and hugs to you both, trish and alison...without a doubt, making it through the harder times with my sanity intact had a lot to do with the fantastic support I had from my friends, both on- and off-line. Sometimes, a little perspective goes a long way... :)

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