This is the beginning of the fourth week with my son, uninterrupted by visitation with his father, thanks to getting Thanksgiving weekend which wasn’t part of my regularly scheduled time with him.
In years past, long stretches like this were really hard. I’m sure part of it was that he was younger and harder to handle… Less able to communicate and more able to, um… bang on things and make little boy noises. But right now, this stretch? This has been one of the greatest months on record.
We haven’t even really DONE much either, just a lot of spending time together… Getting our rhythms in sync. It’s been really beautiful and I can tell that the both of us are just more at peace and calmer an happier.
I’m not saying that going to his dad disrupts that, but more so that a broken pattern in the structure of a homelife is… I’m regretful for that because really, that’s on my shoulders. I was the stupid barely-not-a-teenager anymore that got knocked up and stole that normalcy away from him. People always say, “Kids are resilient!” And they are… But they’re that way because they HAVE to be… How much happier are we in our own lives when we can just relax and know what tomorrow will bring? Disjointed spaces in our timelines, hopping from one house to another with two sets of parents and two sets of rules… I mean, seriously… My kid currently has three sets of grandparents and, if I ever get married, he’ll have four. Four sets of grandparents.
So maybe this non-nuclear family thing isn’t so bad… There are so many people in his life that are in his camp, on his team, waiting on the ready to fight his battles for him.
We lived far away from my family when I was growing up. My mom got a job in Atlanta when I was three and we moved from North Carolina down to Norcross, Georgia (before Norcross, Georgia was hood-y and dangerous. I never thought twice about being far away from them. Our situation was just that we were here and they were there. We’d go to North Carolina for either Thanksgiving or Christmas and we’d spend a day at Mema’s house and a day or two at my Aunt’s house and a day or two at my grandma’s house. Then my dad would repack the van with our luggage, like tetris blocks, and I’d go hide under grandma and grandpa’s bed, hoping like hell they’d forget me and I could stay there with them forever.
My son’s life isn’t quite like that. All of his family (with the exception of some of his Great-Aunts and Great Uncles) live within an hour of his house. And my parents live… on the other side of the house. It’s really special…
So I can’t give him a nuclear family with 2.5 kids and a dog and picket fence, but what I can give him is daily interaction with my parents and regular interaction with his stepmom’s family and his dad’s brother and his dad’s parents. That’s special. In it’s own way, that’s as important as that typical, non-divorced, unspliced homelife.