June 19, 2007 at 1:34 AM | Posted in Personal | 2 Comments
  I’m not my father.  Not my mother either, I suppose. . .
  But I’m not my father.  I’m alot like him, and I see myself in him, alot.  I understand him better now.
  My sister was coddled as a child.  And as a teen.  And as a young woman.  And as an approaching-middle-age woman.  My mom and dad both.  They shouldn’t have; it’s not healthy.  But I realize why they did, albeit unknowingly.
  They didn’t want to let their baby go.
  I took my daughter yesterday, for Father’s Day.  We went to the mall, ate, went to the movie, went shopping.  Not exciting in any way, shape or form.  But it was a great day for me.  It made me happy, also, that my daughter seemed to be happy to be with me.
  I’ve talked about my son, Mitchell.  This is Miranda’s turn.
  I see alot of The Storm in Miranda, and it worries me.  I don’t want my daughter to end up like my ex wife, and the inevitability of that squeezes my heart and makes it hard to breath.
  But I do see the good and bad of my ex in her, reminding me that my ex wasn’t all bad.  I know I have painted my ex in a bad light–but look, she had to have *some* redeeming qualities, at one time, or else I was a complete and total idiot for ever being with her.
  My daughter is stubborn.  Incredibly.  I remember when she was a toddler, she would ask for something.  "Can I"  When I would tell her NO, she would ask again, LOUDER.  "CAN I?"  Her voice would get louder and louder, asking.  She does not like to be told no.
  She is gifted and artistic.  She loves to draw.  She likes to write stories, too.  She likes to create.  I see her kraftwerk, guided by her mother’s hand.  She is going to be good at this.
  Like my son, she is very smart.  They have their differences, and I see each one as different sides of a mirror of me.  My son is anti-social to the point of being neurotic; my daughter, meanwhile, is gregarious to the point of being annoying.
  While I believe my son may be smarter, my daughter has an unusually innate sense of *people*.  She has a higher social intelligence.  She knows people, she likes them she is social, she likes to talk to people.  She understands.  Both of my two children are smarter and more world-knowledgeable than I was at their ages.
  My daughter is sweet and affectionate.  She likes to hug, to be friendly.  She cares about people.  I remember two years ago, she was having a problem with a girl in her class who was mean.  Callous and rude, calling her names and picking on her.  Miranda really internalized it, took it personally.  How can anyone not like me? I know she was thinking.
  The teacher and I had discussed this–she knew Miranda was very emotional.  The teacher told Miranda she needed to work on it herself and find a solution.
  She did.  She kept at it, worked with the girl, and eventually they became friends, or at least somewhat friendly.  The other girl was still a bitch, but no longer dumped it all on Miranda.  This from an 8 year old.

  Almost a year ago–July 9th–is when I left my wife.  I had planned that day as THE DAY.  It was a Sunday.  Linda took Miranda across the street to go do some craft thing at a neighbors.  I used that time to pack up my bag, throw some stuff in my truck.  I had a talk with Mitchell about it–it’s hard to read what he is thinking.  He has a wall up.  Always.
  They came back, and I was waiting for the right time.  I was hanging out in the bedroom, hoping for her to come in there, so we could talk, privately.
  Miranda came in to see me.  We talked, we played, we wrestled around like we do–gently, because she’s a girl, with lots of tickling.
  I felt like a heel, playing with her like that, knowing what I was going to do later.  But I also needed it.  I was going to be going away, and I needed "one last–"
  I didn’t want to let my baby go.

  It would never be the same again.   I hope that, when she gets older, at the very least she will understand better my side of it.  Right now, we haven’t talked about it much, her and I.  I know she gets an earful from her mother about how horrible I am,  ranging from snide little asides to full-blown episodes going on at length about the bastard I am.
  And yet she still loves me.  She has that way about her, she knows people. Maybe she sees her mother for who she is, and loves her anyway.  That’s good.  Maybe she sees me for what I am, despite what her mother says.  I hope so.  She is a caring and sensitive child.
  I wonder where she gets that from?


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  1. SO I may have told you this before… The best thing my mother did for me was not talk shit about my dad and let me find out the type of person he was and who my step mom was. So if you are saying nothing bad about your ex in front of either of your kids than you are a step ahead of the game. I can assure you, it may not be today, tomorrow or the next day but your daughter will appreciate you more for not being the way her mother is, because I know how bad it hurts to hear how shitty the other person is that is supposed to love you. I told Kim to tell you to have her take you to court, let her fuck up and the judge will give you custody. Or at least thats what happened with paul and his siblings, their mother lost custody because she acted a fool in court.

  2. I\’m glad you and your daughter had a good day!
    It is good you refrain from saying anything about her mother.
    Kids aren\’t stupid, they can figure things out and understand more
    when they get older.

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