My life, as with most everyone I know who has kids, revolves completely around family life. My husband and I work as a team doing all the million things that come with having a family. The time that we are all able to be together as a family are precious to us, and we hardly ever trade that time in to go out with our friends. Our self-worth and pride and joy comes from our family, and our home is our safe haven.
I was thinking back to my most significant ex. (Significant in the way that my time with him most influenced every relationship after him) He is now a late 30-something married man who has children, and he spends most of his time away from them. No, he doesn't work that much. He has a social life that probably rivals all the Paris Hilton's of the world. He is always out and about doing something, whether it is seeing the latest underground band play, seeing the midnight release of every awesome new movie, or taking out-of-state road trips for every comic book (not really comic book, but close) convention/vintage sale out there, (just to name a few) and just being generally "cool". I know this because of social media but also because we are still in touch, through text and other old mutual friends. (It's been 20 years, but my circle of friends is still pretty tight.)
Now, I don't know his wife except to know that she does have a career of her own. I am not really sure if she is okay with his wanderlust lifestyle (he would have you believe that she is, and maybe that's true) but I just don't understand that from either side. I don't know of any adult with kids other than actual rockstars (trust me, he is not a rockstar) that are working full time jobs then galavanting the streets all night long. (I know he is because of the weird random group texts he sends out at 2am, and on the group social media invites with bizarre vampire hours listed. That prove that at least 6 out of 7 days he is not with his family) I just know that I wouldn't want to be the woman holding down the place, making and having dinner, sleeping, and parenting alone. I don't know how you do all that and not become bitter and resentful. (maybe she is). I can tell you that he definitely does not have some amazing corporate job or is a professional athlete making billions of dollars where it would be more understandable (although still loath-able) that the wife did it all and didn't care.
The reflecting started with 2 seperate posts I saw from him. One was thanking his wife for doing what she does, because it allows him to do what he does. All I could think of was how shitty to thank her for raising your kids and keeping your bed warm so that you can run around acting 20 again like you have no responsibilities. I would have been pissed if that kind of message had been to/about me.
The second thing I read from him was a post about when he is having a really crappy, beat-down kind of day, he pulls up this video of the "best night ever" and it makes him smile and know everything is going to be alright. And it was a video he shot in some dark underground bar of a band playing. And my first reaction was to be mad about that. Are you freaking kidding me? Then I was sad for his wife and kids...then I was sad for him. To not know the joy and solace you can get from your spouse and kids. To not feel like your family is your pride and joy...the family you CREATED.
I don't understand the need to ALWAYS be elsewhere. I don't know how you could want to be. Even when it's hard (and man, is it ever hard some days!) Thinking back, I remember very vividly how he always had to be somewhere, doing something. He was never content to just BE.
And I wish that the teenage me with a broken heart could know the things I know now, both about him and life. Because the me now could never be happy in a life with him. And that the guy I created a family with, well, he was worth all of it.
- I am an insane human being. I have been a wife for 15 plus years, and a mom for almost as long. I had 3 children early on...then struggled with life and IF and loss for 8 years. Thought our family was complete, so I compensated by adopting all the shelter pets. Then we were surprised that our luck changed. Our running total is Parents: 2, Kids: 5, Pets:4. My life is far from perfect, and much of our happiness was hard fought and won, from the death of a parent, job loss and marriage troubles, miscarriage and IF, we have been through it all, and dare I say we made it, with a lot of love and laughter, and not taking ourselves too seriously.