Good Over Evil

19 03 2007

I have been thinking and thinking of how I was to approach this post.

I have gone through every emotion I had – both ends of the spectrum – and I have finally come to a calm, logical stage.

Calm and logical is good. Trust me.

Imagine, if you will, the girls and I at home after our day of fun on Maya’s birthday. We are whiling away an hour between dinner and heading off for tutoring by playing Maya’s new Cranium game. Maya had called her Dad to come down to see her for her birthday. He arrived and sat quietly on the couch tuned in to nothing but his never ending basketball game.

I continued playing, wondering when he was going to give her a present.

About 10 minutes before we had to go I instructed the girls to put the game away because we only had a few minutes. John remarked, “Where’s the cake?”

I replied that we had decided to forgo the cake until Friday night and her sleepover.

“Then why did I even come down, then?” he asked.

Hmmm.

As we were getting coats on, he hugged Maya, walked out the door and drove away.

No happy birthday. No present. Nothing.

I was absolutely shocked. Normally he tends to go overboard, so this was not at all the norm.

I looked at Maya, and she must have read the shock on my face. “Oh, I kinda expected it Mom.”

What? At 10 you expect that you Dad won’t give you a present?

I tried not to show my shock and anger….”Why did you expect it?” I was able to strangle out.

“Oh, he said that if I didn’t read more he wouldn’t give me a present for my birthday.”

“Honey, did you tell him you are just finishing up a 507 page book?”

“Yeah, but he didn’t believe me because I tried to tell him what the story was about and I don’t think he understood what I was trying to tell him.”

She shrugged it off. I know somehow that it has affected her, but there was and has been no sign of her caring whatsoever about his slight.

I on the other hand have been seething. The next day I was planning exactly what I would tell him when I excommunicated him from our lives. The things that I would do to absolutely make sure I would never have to see him ever again.

And only one of these things involved chopping his head off and putting it in the freezer.

And, through some thoughtful counsel of a friend, I have backed off my instincts. Would it really be right to do something like that at this time? At a time when she would probably look back on and only see that she stopped seeing her Dad because of HER birthday?

No. He will dig his own grave.

They already know. They see him for what he is already. And although that is sad, it is also a place of strength for them.

Case in point: A few days later Sophie was talking about what she wanted for her birthday. She noted that her bike was getting too small. He immediately said, “I’m not getting you a bike!”

And she said, “Oh, I know. I’ve been saving my money in my school savings account. I already have enough to get my own bike if I want to.”

I could not have been more proud.

They both know that as a family we can do without him. Not only getting by, but we are better that way. And now, they are learning that they can get anything they need on their own. They are strong, sweet, good-tempered, money-saving girls.

Whatever the world has to offer is theirs.

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9 responses

19 03 2007
megan

Oh I love this post, because it is so true…
Remarkable and joyful girls. Full to busting.

I can’t wait to see the grown ups they become..
xxm

20 03 2007
Squishi

Bastard. Tell me his address and i’ll add his dismembered body to the 3 inconsiderate housemates I already have in my freezer.

He makes me mad. >:<

20 03 2007
Ant

OMG. That is unbelievable.

Where the fuck does this guy get off?

The plus is that half-way down that post I thought exactly the conclusions that you reached at the end – about how strong and wonderful those girls are and how they will grow into remarkable women.

But this in no way pats him on the back – it is in spite of his shitty behaviour and is testament to your brilliant parenting…

God I’m so mad!

20 03 2007
Christine

Can I maybe chop off his head and put it in the freezer for you? What an ass. And that is all I will say about it.

Because honestly, your girls are simply amazing. Honestly, they seem like they will grow up to be the most fantastic individuals I have ever heard of. I’m proud of them, and I don’t even know them. You give them a couple of extra smooches for me.

20 03 2007
Olivia

Oh, grrrrr. He stinks.

But your girls are wonderful and that’s to YOUR credit.

20 03 2007
rennratt

Please email me your address, even if it’s a po box.

I firmly believe that BOTH girls deserve a gift card to a bookstore, or Wal Mart, or a craft store.

They rock. And so do you, for not following through on any of your thoughts. I can not imagine how hard that was – as I am ENRAGED for you!

20 03 2007
Janie

well, i’m not one to hop on the nearest bandwagon, but… what a complete ass.

your girls will appreciate you– and your wise calmness in this– more and more. it’s sad heit (sorry, but heit doesn’t deserve to be called a ‘he’) is making bad choices, but you’re right; those girls will be just fine! beyond great, actually.

22 03 2007
anika

Wow, Shari — Your girls absolutely astound me with their forgiveness, their wisdom, their bravery and their maturity. And I know exactly where they got it from: their amazing mom.

28 03 2007
Kingfisher

WHAT.

A.

COMPLETE.

JACKASS.

Your daughters will have some sorting out to do later in life on the topic of their “father,” but it is obvious that their self-esteem, pride, logic, dead reckoning, and centeredness is solely due to their awesome Mom, who departs more wisdom and comfort than a thousand jackasses could ever dream of.

Give them, and yourself, a hug for me.

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