Over the past week, I have been talking to a ton of people about the Antigua trip as well as the fast approaching Rocking Horse Ranch trip. I love talking to people and as anyone who has spoken to me knows, sometimes the simplest conversations get carried away and before you know it 45 minutes has passed. Maybe it is the passion for what I do? But it is funny, that in each conversation, I get the inkling that people are secretly saying to themselves, “I wonder what his deal is?”. I am not talking about pricing specials or my history of becoming involved with Single Parent Travel, my personal deal. Well, wonder no more! And to my ex-wife who might be reading this–it’s ok, you can breathe easily!
Rather than bore you with the minutae, here is the Cliff’s Notes version. I was married in 1990 to a great woman I met three years prior. We had our first child in 1991, another in 1994, and the last (thank god–three IS enough) in 1997. The kids are the greatest gift I could have ever asked for and to be honest, while they present their challanges, I cannot imagine life without them. Unfortunately, our marraige was not working out and we divorced in 2000.
While no divorce is a walk in the park, I like to think ours was as close as one can get. Sure we had our moments (and we still do) but at one point, we both agreed that the only people coming out ahead in this game were the two attorneys. Over a weekend we hashed out a property settlement and agreed on equal joint shared and legal custody of the kids. Noreen (my ex) moved to a different home and I kept the old one for a while so the kids woudl have some continuity. Aside from the agreements and legal issues, Noreen and I both agreed that going forward, there was nothing we could do to affect anything that happened in the past and that we really needed to put it behind ourselves and focus on what was good for the kids.
This set the stage for a great deal of communications. We both worked hard to make sure the kids had two parents that loved and supported them–it was a bummer it was from two homes. And I am incredibly proud to say that none years later it is still the same way.
Noreen and I actually became good friends. Oddly enough she is also my Godmother (when we married I had never been Baptized and needed a “sponsor” in the Church)–who never sends me Christmas or birthday gifts! While I personally was not “friends” with her husband, I was friendly and the reaction of other people was always amusing when we were together or talking. I recall one cheerleading competition for my youngest, her husband and I carpooled to the arena–talk about strange looks. But hey, he paid for the gas and I had an SUV!
We do communicate almost daily. If we need to swap up weeks with the kids it is rarely a problem. Email is a godsend. The kids can’t play one of us off the other. And we actually went on a vacation together one time.
I have nothing bad to say about my marraige or my ex wife. It upsets me when I hear people say “I never loved him/her” or “I knew it was a mistake from day one”–yes you did, and no it was not. Love is indeed blind and for most (certanly not all) there was some attraction. Personally, I have changed and I no longer see that attraction, but I certainly do not deny it ever existed–what message does that send to your kids? Life changes and has allsorts of twists and turns, sometimes we can travel down the path together, and other times we need to take separate roads. It is the nature of the beast and you simply need to make the best of it.
So there you have it, my divorcce laid out for all to read. And to my friend Noreen, if you are reading, thanks for three great kids–the best gift I ever received.