Responsible parenting and leadership are a start. In between reaching for the sky (Toy Story rocks).

Screw the darkness. I prefer the lightness of Pop.

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

To Run for My Life with the Love of My Life

"Wake up
Run for your life with me
Wake up
Run for your life with me
In another perfect life
In another perfect light
We run
We run
We run..."

-Foo Fighters, Run

Wow. She actually told them. I knew we weren't hiding it from them, but it wasn't something to date that had come up in any context or conversation.

Until now.

I'm not even sure of the context actually; the Mama (what I lovingly call my wife) just said it out loud.

"You know, Daddy was married to someone before me."


"What?!?" said Beatrice. Bryce just stared at me.

"Yes, he was, but they didn't have any children," said the Mama.

"What happened? Did she die?"

Kids, they simply say whatever comes into their amazing little heads.

"No," I answered. "She didn't die. We broke up and got divorced."

I knew they knew what that meant, going to school with other kids of divorce.

"Where is she now?" Bea asked.

"I don't know," I said.

"Are you guys going to break up?"

We laughed. "No, honey. We love each other and love you both."

"Okay. Love you, too."

"I can't believe you told them that," I then said to the Mama. But I wasn't mad, just surprised.

"Why not?"

I know, right? Why not. But what they don't know yet is that our life wasn't all romantic neat-and-clean happy endings. It's much messier than that. Overlapping with of failure and sorrow and poor choices and sometimes we have to be pushed really friggin' hard to get moving in the right direction.

They don't know that, 20 years ago, when the Mama and I were already seeing each other and very much in love, that I was only separated from my ex, not divorced yet. I knew then that I wasn't going back; I was done and very unhappy with me and the relationship I had with my soon to be ex, no matter how good of a person she was. And she was.

Instead, I wallowed in limbo, not willing to pull myself out of the self-loathing sludge and get on with life. I wanted to, but wasn't willing.

At least not until the Mama inspired me with a little fight or flight adrenaline. I had wanted her to go with me to meet my entire family for my sister's birthday, which just happened (and still happens) to be the day before Valentine's Day.

She went to work one day and left me a note in the apartment I had at the time, basically saying she wasn't going with me anywhere until you get your shit together and move on with your life if you want to be with me.

Damn straight. She had shared a lot more passionate words than that in making her case, which was crystal clear to me. And so I moved on with my life.

Wake up.
Run for your life with me.

For weeks since we told the girls about my past, the above song has been full-throttle volume in my head. Although not really a romantic song to say the least, the very essence of it struck me as representative of that moment in time, to stop feeling sorry for myself and get on with living and being me. To run for my life with the love of my life. With all the stumbles and skinned knees along the way.

In another perfect life
In another perfect light
We run...

"Ooooo, why do you guys have to kiss all the time?" said Bea.

"Because we love each other," said the Mama.

"Indeed we do," I said. "And we love you, too!"

Happy Valentine's Day!

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