Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Personal Notes and Musings

Ive tried to make my life better, my children's lives better. In many ways I've succeeded. At times I've felt that I've pushed forward too hard though. Sometimes taking too much for myself, and sometimes not enough.

Women have been the source of my strength and my weakness in equal measure throughout my whole life. Sometimes I ask too much of them, and sometimes not enough.

I have been told to downplay it, I have been told to make it not that big of a deal. And I hope it isn't. You don't know what Im talking about I know, but I am coming upon a moment in my life that I have long feared. It comes too soon, yet not soon enough. Within the month of March I will be telling Jadon that while I love him very much, while I am raising him and he is my own son, I am his father in every way... but one... Biologically. Just thinking about how to say it to him is the most heart wrenching experience, I can't put into words that which is a reality. But it doesn't matter.

I have gotten a lot of great advice, I put out a request for advice in a few places and several people came to my rescue. Most of these people are kids who were adopted by their parents, sharing their experiences with me from when they were first told, how they reacted, how their parents handled it. Lots of really good advice and it has really bolstered my confidence. Nicole and I will be telling Jadon and Tristan at the same time, we're going to be prepared to answer their questions, but we aren't going to make too big of a deal out of it.

One of the insights I got from someone I work with indicated it was much much harder on her father than it was on her. I think I know exactly what she means, I imagine the worst but I know Jadon is strong and can handle the information, especially how we will present it. But inside me nothing changes, even though I know he wont, I'm afraid he will feel differently about me, see me differently. Even though it will probably just be rebellious teenage hormones talking, my heart will break a little if I ever heard him use it against me "you're not my real dad, I dont have to listen to you".

My first valentines day with Samantha was very nice, I wanted to make it special. It seems weird to me though, Valentines day came the week after we decided to step back a little from our relationship. I bought a bottle of wine, a rose in a neat little heart shaped vase, with a gem embedded in the center of the rose pedals, and a big box of chocolates. This is what she found when she woke up in the morning. Then I took her, her sister and my kids out to a big dinner at Red Lobster. We all dressed up nice, the boys and I were wearing nice clothes and Ties. During dinner I gave her a nice diamond/gold necklace that I knew she liked.

It was a nice day, Jadon went crazy for the crab, I thougth he might not like the work involved in cracking it open, but he freaking loved it, he was so proud of himself whenever he got a piece out, he got really excited and overall it was a really good experience for him.

Basketball is going really well so far this year. Jadon's team lost the first two games, and they have won the last two games. As soon as basketball is over, the boys want to start Soccer, and then Baseball when that is over. They are becoming more and more interested in the sports, even requesting practice time outside of their normal practices. Its cool, AND they pay video games more, the best of both worlds!

I bought an elliptical to help me get back into shape finally. I posted a link to the model I bought on facebook. I really like it so far, I was hoping to start daily exercising tomorrow morning, but as its almost 2am, I think I might wait one more day. There were just things I needed to finally get into my blog.

It cost more than I had originally planned on spending, but I looked into some user reviews and I gave it some thought. I think this one will be a good fit for me and hopefully last me at least 2 years of heavy use. Pun/Fat joke fully intended. Heavy Use, haha. F-Word!


Monday, February 1, 2010

The Adventure Continues

What the hell!?! I was sure I did a blog in January at some point. I guess not :-(. Normally I do a blog when the boys leave for a trip (which I did) then I do a blog when they get back. Well, NORMALLY I did several blogs per month, but I havent been on that schedule for awhile.

Before I get too deep into this blog I want to put out there a little info about something I have wanted to do for quite some time. Ive mentioned on several occasions that I want to maybe try to get my Blog published as kind of a memoir geared towards people who identify with the divorce/custody battle struggles I went through, primarily the emotional struggles. I feel my state of mind and the issues I was dealing with are genuinely reflected within the words of my blog.

As I said above, Ive mentioned this on several occasions. Well guess what? mentioning something in my blog doth not make it a reality. So I've taken one simple careful step forward towards reazlizing this, Ive put my feelers out on a few professionals that can hopefully give me some guidance on what to do with what I've got. Im not going to bother asking anyone if they think its a good idea, as I think it is and that is enough for me.

It will need a lot of editing before its complete, but that is not the kind of help I am looking for. At the moment I am looking for advice on exactly how to lay it out, if I should make it a word for word memoir, or if I should go in and write a bit of a cohesive narrative with lots of quotes from my blogs. LOTS of quotes from my blog though, I am still picturing that 2nd possiblity being like 75-80% blog.

There are really a lot of things I could do, which is why I am looking for a little advice and guidance. I am starting with some editors as they dont just sit there and check your english after all.

Im serious about this and I will feel it is a success if only 1 person were to identify with me and my experiences and hopefully feel comfort in knowing they are not alone, or possibly even learn some of the things I have learned. This is not an attempt to teach, but merely a humble attempt to share the experiences that reforged the very man typing out the words you are reading at this very moment. Ok, maybe not so humble! LOL

I am so grateful for the life I have and it just keeps getting better and better. I have an apartment that I mostly like. It could be bigger and cheaper, but I think I would feel that about any place I live! I like my kid's school and their teachers. I have a good job that is paying for me to go to school. I have family and some friends that love me (not that I have friends that dont love me, Im just saying that I dont have all that many friends, but I plan on changing that this year). I have a wonderful girlfriend that... tries.... to put up with all my shit :-). And saving the best for last, I have two of the worlds most wonderful kids in the world.

School is fucking tough! Its not really, its my stupid bullshit inability to manage any kind of working personal schedule that is killing me. I dont fucking do my homework on time and Im really getting frustrated with myself. Im taking some fairly simple classes and making them as hard as possible. Who does that?

Using my best Arnold Schwarzenegger impression "I am the Procrastinator".

And its true, I am. I think Ive started working towards fixing it, but the hardest thing on the planet (for me) is forming new habits.

I will succeed at this, nothing will stop me, nothing short of death can. Its too important to me and I need to get that through my thick skull! I can change and the way I handle the boys reading schedule proves it.

I used to think it was best to have them read before bedtime, which is a good time for normal leisure reading. But in order to guarantee that they got their reading practice in, we started reading as soon as we got home. Just today they were both reading some sick words to me and I couldn't be a prouder daddy. Tristan has a natural affinity for it, but Jadon has really struggled. I hate hate to play favorites, but a little part of me feels even more proud of Jadon just because I know how much work he has put into his reading and I can see just how far he has come, fighting every step of the way. I am proud to death of both my boys. If I come away from this parenting thing with anything, I hope it is knowing that my children will grow up knowing how to tackle challenges and how to learn from them and make themselves better.

Tristan's basketball ended before they left for winter break, he had some fun, though one game he did get hit in the face with the ball and get a bloody nose right away. The boys have both started being able to take a hit a little more gracefully, with or without tears they don't freak out anymore unless its really bad.

Jadon just started basketball and it is off the hook. Its so different from the younger age groups. He practices twice a week and then has a game on Sunday. The games last 40 minutes and are divided up into 10 minute quarters. I think the teams get time outs too, but for the most part the clock never stops running except in between quarters.

They use the big scoreboard up on the wall to keep track of the time and the score and stuff, they have 3 refs dressed appropriately and they are requiring the kids to follow even more of the rules. The boys are learning even more about 'How' the game is played and even starting to learn a little strategy.

Jadon's team voted on their team name and ended up with Killer Doughnuts. They played against The Terminators this last weekend in their first game and they lost 12-10. But they probably learned a lot more in that game than in any game or practice from previous years.

I am taking the boys and Samantha to a Cougar Basketball game this coming weekend. The team is pretty young this year, I wasnt expecting much out of them, and they have exceeded my expectations. Unfortunately that means I have been disappointed with them more than I expected, sometimes they do so well that when they do bad it sucks and looks really bad. But they are a young team, with some really nice talent, experience goes a long way.

The year already seems to be filling up like crazy. Basketball and cub scouts keeps me pretty busy through the beginning of the year, then in March Nicole, her mother, her sister and our nephews are coming to visit the boys. She will be here for 4 or 5 days I think.

Tristan's 7th birthday is in march. Can you believe that? My YOUNGEST is going to be 7. Wow. of course Im going to be 30 this year, so anything is imaginable.

We might have his party while his mom is here, its a couple weeks early, but one of the weekends in march after that we are going to try to go down to southern idaho with the boys so that they can meet Samantha's family. Im excited, Samantha's youngest brother is Tristan's age.

The first weekend of April the boys and I are traveling across the state with Samantha and possibly her sister Misty. I took April 1st and 2nd off, we are going to spend a day or two in seattle and 2 or 3 days in Bellingham. We are going to see some cousins and spend several hours at Gameworks in Seattle for Tristan's birthday. I think we will just walk around downtown on that Thursday though, last time we were there I think we rushed ourselves a bit.

Im excited, I love the west side and I cant wait to move back over there when the time is right.

Sometime during the later part of the school year the boys will start Rookie League baseball again, one more thing to keep us all busy busy.

Then ofcourse Im still planning on going to San Diego to celebrate my 30th Birthday, so watch out cause here I come all! The Wild Animal Park. The San Diego Zoo. Seaworld. Lego Land. plus a million different museums I want to check out. Its going to be a blast.

I spoke to Nicole a little bit last night, I probably haven't talked about her very much for awhile. As an update, things can still be a little tense especially when I think about all of the things I have yet to accomplish that I still wish to, like adopting Jadon, having him take on my name, and so on.

We get along alright at times, but then other times we can still be at each others throats in a heartbeat.

Thats why my conversation last night came as a surprise. She told me that even though we still have our differences, she knows how much I love the boys, she knows how much I do for them. She said she appreciates everything I do for them, and she wanted me to know she thinks I am doing a good job with them and that they are lucky to have me. It felt really good to hear, coming from her. I dont seek her approval, far from it, but hearing her acknowledge my hard work and my love for the boys was a great step forward. Even though she had to get off the phone abruptly because her boyfriend entered the room lol.

You know? I think I've said enough for now. Peace out all, have fun watching the Superbowl. We'll be at my moms house watching it this weekend! GO SAINTS!