Monday, January 30, 2012
I know the pieces fit, cause I watched them fall away.
My friend Savannah said it best the other day, she said something along the lines of, "I love being a mom, I'm not always good at it, but I love it. What I hate, is being a dad."
It has been nearly a year since I received the email from Aiden's father, a full week after their last visit, that he didn't want to see Aiden any more. What followed were weeks of despair, for both me and my son. I didn't sleep. I came up with excuses as to why he wasn't going to spend the weekend with his dad and step-mom and two little sisters. I talked to lawyers, and online support groups, and chat rooms, and read anything I could get my hands on to do with child custody and visitation laws.
Pretty much everyone I talked to said the same thing, that there isn't a court that will force a man to see his child, and that's not what I want in the first place. I wanted this man, who only came into Aiden's life a year before, to WANT to be a part of his child's life. I told him from the beginning that if he wasn't all in, to stay the hell out. We had been doing just fine for six years before him. But he had to be the knight in shining armor, swoop down, and save the poor little boy from his single working mother.
This breaks my heart more than Aiden not knowing his father. More than the questions I would get when I was the one to show up to breakfast on bring your dad to breakfast day.
Tonight, after I picked him up from school, it was 65 degrees out. We drove over to the track next to our apartment, and Aiden seemed almost abnormally quiet. I asked him what was wrong, and instead of his usual answer of "nothing" or "I'm bored" I was overtaken by a little 8 year old boy who started to sob into my shoulder. "I miss my dad." He said very matter-of-factly through his tears. I, of course, started to cry, which in turn, made him cry harder. (He has told me before that he hates it when I cry because it makes him cry.) I told him through my tears that I love him enough for both me and his dad. That grandma and grandpa love him more than we could ever tell him. I told him that he is the most important part of my world, that I grew him, and nothing would ever make me stop loving him.
Then he pulled out a sheet of paper with sentences he had been writing at school. "I do not have a dad. I love my mom bigger than the whole world." it said.
I hate playing both of the parts. I hate that his father is out there, knows about him, and still does nothing. No letters, no phone calls. Nothing.
I don't think that Aiden is searching for a father figure. He has them. Loads of them between my family (grandpa, J (my sister's fiance), my cousin C who Aiden thinks is the coolest thing since sliced bread), my male friends (M, J, E, S...), and D who was a central male figure in his life this last summer and again now. Aiden isn't looking for a dad. He knows who his father is, and he wants THAT man to contact him. THAT man to be a part of his life. THAT man to care, even a little.
How can you be almost 40 and just cut something of yours out of your life? Tossed like a piece of trash. All of this is harder now because we're approaching the anniversary of when he walked away. Valentine's Day was the last day Aiden saw anyone from that side of the family.
I can be mom. I can be a pretty damn good mom. I can advocate for my child and teach him to advocate for himself. What I keep asking myself is, where the fuck is dad in all of this? How can any of this not only be legal, but seen to be okay with an entire extended family so much so that none of them have tried to regain contact.
Think of all you have missed so far, Steve. Think about how much more you're missing now. Karma will get you. Hope you're ready.