The Ex recently asked if I could take Ankle Biter on a Friday night that wasn’t a regularly scheduled night. I hesitated because it would cut into my visit with Sunshine. I thought about her coming down via bus to see me that night, but the last bus to town would have left before she got off of work.
So I started to think. And think. And over-think. I wanted the full weekend to spend with Sunshine but also didn’t want to pass up the opportunity to see my son. I mean, the LAST thing I wanted was to come across as some selfish a-hole deadbeat dad who would put his girlfriend above his own son.
I explained this in an email to The Ex. I said that if it was a work-related function or just something that she really felt was important, then I would take him for the night. I explained my feelings and thoughts on saying “yes” and “no” and how it would look either way.
This was her response:
Hey.. you worry too much :).. It’s no big deal.. Just a get together and I can just cut the night short and bring Ankle Biter with me.. We’re meeting for supper so I can easily bring him along and just leave early.. no big deal.. And just so you know.. I NEVER doubt your love, affect or overall best interest in Ankle Biter…
You a great dad CBG. I had my concerns at the beginning I must confess, but you have blown my expectations out to the water. .. You truly love him and I know what a sacrifice you make only having him every other weekend and now for an hour twice a week. You’re allowed to have a life and I know that having a long distance relationship is hard and I would never want to add to that stress. It’s in Ankle Biter’s best interest that Daddy be happy too so never think that I would ever judge you for not being able to take him on one of my weekends.. and it’s ok if you ever want me to take him on one of yours… you just have to let me know..
So don’t worry another second about it, I just thought I would ask first but like I said it’s no big deal..
Have a good day and just in case I didn’t say it clearly or maybe I don’t say it enough.. You’re a great Dad.. I couldn’t ask for a better partner in raising Ankle Biter and never think that I doubt you..
So needless to say, this one email was amazing to read. I always thought that she’d see me as this aloof moron…this guy who had panic attacks when Ankle Biter was a colicky baby who would never be able to handle the ways of fatherhood on his own.
I never take a single day for granted that the relationships I have with the mothers of my two beautiful children are as good as they are. I read too many horror stories and hear too many horror stories to simply brush off my relationships as being “the way things should be”.
“You’re a great dad.”
Those are definitely words I never thought I’d hear from her. And knowing our past and how she thought of me when our marriage ended, it really means a lot.