Yep, that's exactly how I feel about this Father's Day crap.
I've been going back and forth about what I wanted to say about this today, so I think I might just sit here and say everything that's on my mind.
My older 3 kids are with their father today. They have been looking forward to it for the past few days, and have carefully made him some gifts even though they apparently had already gone with their stepmother and gotten him some other stuff. But hey, they wanted to make him something, so they did.
For all of our differences, he and I get along ok now. I'm pretty confident saying that we don't like each other much, and we don't agree with a lot of each other's decisions, but we get along. We make it work for the sake of the kids. It is obvious that he loves the kids and that they enjoy the time that they are with him. It's all good.
Then, there's Alex's father. Yeah. You know, Mr. MIA. Still not a peep from him. Here I thought to myself, well, it's Father's Day. Surely he'll show up or call or something. As I type this, it's almost 6:30pm, and still nothing. Alex has been asking for him lately, and all I can tell him is I don't know. The lamest of lame excuses, especially from a parental standpoint. And I am standing my ground on this one - I am not contacting him. It is not my job to force him to be a father.
Daniel. My Daniel. No matter what I say about the subject, I'm going to piss somebody off, so here goes. I refuse to pussyfoot around it. Instead of his father making the decision to seek treatment for his disease, he made the choice to ignore it. He made the choice to continue to drink himself stupid every chance he had. Ultimately, he chose booze over his family AND his life. So now, Daniel doesn't have a father to even attempt to have contact with on Father's Day. It's no longer an option.
While I am so thankful that Sarah, Emily, and Jared have a father in their lives to spend the day with (and not just this day, but you know what I mean) I am so disappointed that Alex and Daniel don't.
Yes, they have positive male role models in their lives, but they don't have a dad. They don't have someone who is there for them 24/7 to answer their questions or give them that advice that only a dad can give. I hope and pray that I am able to do that for them, but I know that no matter what, I'm not their dad. I'm their mom. Even if I were to get into a relationship (*shudder*), I wouldn't expect that guy to take on the role of 'father-like figure' for a very long time.
(and so help me if that spider runs across the wall in front of me and dodges my pitifully inaccurate aim with whatever object I have close enough to me to squish it one more time........gah!)
OK, where was I? Oh yeah, no father figures.....
I think that the thing that pisses me off the most is that both of their fathers left by choice.
Alex's father pretty much ran the second I told him that I was pregnant. He stayed gone throughout my pregnancy, but then after Alex was born, he became a Really Good Dad. He always made time for Alex on a regular basis. He went out of his way to spend time with his son. Now lately, for whatever reason, that's changed. I won't even go through the list of excuses that he gave me the last time, but suffice it to say that none of those excuses would have kept me away from my child for that long. I can't even begin to imagine the list of excuses that I'll get this time - if he shows up again. But still, the point is that for whatever reason, he has decided to disappear.
Daniel's father - well, anyone who knows me or who has been reading knows that story. He was an alcoholic who chose to ignore the treatment possibilities and eventually his constant boozing led me to kicking him out of our house. He could have gone through treatment in order to see his son again, but he chose not to - and now he's dead. Daniel doesn't have a father anymore, because his father chose booze over everything else that should have mattered.
How can a man - any man - choose to not see his child? I know that there are extreme situations, but I'm not talking about those. I'm talking about a father who lives (maybe) 10 miles away from his son, and even works within a mile of his son's house - how can not seeing him for almost 2 months at at time be justified? I'm talking about a father who ignores available treatment options for his disease and chooses to continue drinking to the detriment of his own health and relationships with his family. I'm talking about the guys who make the choice to walk away.
How do they do that? How do they sleep at night?
I just don't get it.
So, in honor of our version of Father's Day (which may come to be known as Fatherless Father's Day around here from now on), Alex and Daniel and I walked to the grocery store, got a whole bunch of junk food, and that's what we're having for supper. We are all enjoying some quality time with our good friends Ben & Jerry, and we're going to watch movies and sew (well, they'll watch and I'll sew) and we'll just hang out and do our thing our way - because that's what we do. Maybe we'll even go out and cut the grass if it doesn't look like it's going to storm. Or maybe we'll just do nothing.
We don't have all of the answers. But we'll figure out the important ones eventually. We'll make this crazy little family of ours work, one way or another.