The Big Secret – part two

As I said on Monday (and you really should read this first before continuing on), I had a huge secret that I never told anybody over the years. In fact, other than a few people in my home town, nobody ever knew. I was young, dumb, and selfish…never realizing the pure joy that being a parent can bring.

Fast forward to two years ago when my mother passed away. I received a Facebook message again from her, this time offering me condolences on the loss of my mom. It was unexpected, even though we did share a couple of mutual friends. I just thought her hatred and disdain for me would prevent her from reaching out like that. She did, however, and it was a very welcome gesture. I thanked her for the kind words and felt I needed to tell her a few things.

First, I wanted to let her know that I wasn’t the same man I was 10+ years before. At this point, I had been dating Sunshine for a couple of years. I felt as though I was a MUCH better man than I was prior to being with her, as being with Sunshine has simply made me a better man all around.

Second, and the reason for the first point, was that I let the mother to know that I was ready to have a relationship with our daughter, should she ever want to meet me. I took 100% of the blame for the relationship not working out and that I realized just how much I had lost as a result of not being in our daughter’s life. I was a father to two more children now, and I now knew what being a man was all about.

However, she never responded to my message and that was the last that I would hear from her for quite some time.

Fast forward to last September. I received a Facebook friend request from the mother that said the following:

“Hey just a little note to let you know she knows you are her biological father.”

I was shocked to say the least. I asked why this came up and how it all happened, but again there was no response.

I decided to not push the issue. I mean, it was now fifteen years later and if my daughter knew about me, she probably hated me for abandoning her…and I couldn’t blame her for having those thoughts. In my mind, there was resentment and anger and all of it would be justified.

I tried to prepare myself for a follow-up, but how does one do that? I just tried to continue on as best I could with my new life, living with Sunshine and her girls.

Fast forward to about a month ago. I received the following Facebook message:

“Just wanted to let you both know that she would like to meet you both you and Sunshine.”

TO BE CONCLUDED FRIDAY…

The Big Secret – part one

I’ve been sitting on this post for a few weeks now. In fact, I haven’t been doing much writing of any kind over the past three weeks because I’ve been trying to come to terms with this incredible development that has happened in my life. I just haven’t felt inspired to write because I felt like this secret was holding me back from saying anything else…nothing else really mattered but this.

Okay…here it goes.

Just over sixteen years ago, I was in a relationship. It was one of those “this is intense and incredible” relationships that had me feeling like I was the luckiest man in the world. For reasons that are many (a little from my parents, a lot from me), the relationship didn’t work out and things ended on a sour note.

What had happened, though, was that she got pregnant. When the relationship ended, she wanted nothing to do with me and wanted me to have nothing to do with the child. She told me that the birth certificate would not have anybody listed for the father and that she would just disappear.

Being a selfish, stupid guy in my early 20’s, I took this to be my “get out of jail free” card. I was so scared of potential fatherhood (not to even begin to mention how scared I was of my parents’ reaction to everything) and so selfish and only concerned about myself, that I didn’t even begin to put up a fight or argue about the situation.

As the years went by, it became a situation of “out of sight, out of mind”…though I never stopped thinking about the child that was born, a little girl who would never know her biological father.

I never told my ex-wife about her. I had some major trust issues (among other issues) and I always thought that she wouldn’t understand or would want to leave me if I had told her about my “big secret”.

Fast forward to about five years ago. I received a Facebook message from the mother. She just wanted to know that if something happened and my medical information was needed, that she could come to me. Of course I said yes, and was quite excited about the possibility of seeing my daughter or eventually meeting her. I “creeped” the mother’s Facebook account and found a couple of pictures of my daughter…I was blown away by just how much she looked like me. Soon, though, the privacy settings kicked in and that was the last I heard from her for quite some time.

When I began dating Sunshine over four years ago, we both went out of our way to tell each other EVERYTHING. No secrets. So she knew from the very beginning that I had a daughter that I had never met. As it turns out, that was a pretty smart decision.

TO BE CONTINUED WEDNESDAY…

My Own Skin

There are a million things going on right now and I don’t know how to cope. 

The old me would sit in front of the computer with a big bag of chips or a bowl of ice cream or a couple of chocolate bars and find comfort, albeit temporarily. 

The new me…the me that I’m trying to be, anyway…is having a very difficult time coping with stress.

There are things going on at work that are very difficult for me to deal with. A lot of light bulbs went off this week and nobody is tougher on me than me, so when mistakes are made and I’m trying to “clean up” a bit afterwards, it’s disheartening and it usually brings out the self-loathing part of me. I’m also swamped with normal work, too…so the stress is a bit more than usual right now.

I also plan on starting something for the blog…an exercise program that was sent to me in order to do a sponsored post or two. With a wedding tentatively scheduled for August, I want to be in the best shape of my adult life because I owe it both to myself and to Sunshine. The problem is that as soon as I opened up the package, I began feeling overwhelmed. I began feeling uncomfortable in my own skin because I thought there was no way I could do this. Take pictures of myself in order to end up with a before/after shot? No thanks. Get up every morning to do just 10 minutes of exercise? Heck no. I’m not good enough to do that…who do I think I am to have actually thought I could? And to work out next to Sunshine? She ran a frickin’ marathon a couple of months ago…who am I to think I could even stay at a slightly similar pace to her? And if I’m not, then aren’t I just wasting my time with the whole idea?

Sigh.

And on a very personal note, something happened to me this week that will change my life forever. It’s totally NOT a bad thing and no, it’s not a baby (lol). But it’s been an extremely stressful week because of that situation. I’m sure I’ll eventually blog about it and I’m not trying to bait people in by being vague…it’s just a very personal issue and it’s something that I’m having an extremely difficult time dealing with and working through, even though it is a very good thing.

I know…it doesn’t make sense, does it? That’s just how I’m feeling right now…like I’m just not making sense. I feel like I’m walking on egg shells yet can’t figure out why I feel that way. I’m jittery and jumpy and I’m doing my best to not take it out on Sunshine, who is her usual incredible self. She doesn’t know what to do, and I feel terrible that I’m putting her in the awkward position of being “on the outside”. I mean, I want to let her in and tell her what’s going on inside of me, but every time I try I can’t figure out just what the hell IS going on inside of me, and that just makes me more and more frustrated with myself.

I’m just not comfortable in my own skin right now and I wish I knew how to fix that. I know what I used to do, but that’s not going to work for me anymore. I just need to figure out what to do next.