Sunday, August 10, 2014

Playing the Hand You're Dealt

Last weekend, we had the closest thing to one of "our weekends" that we've had in a long time.

My girlfriend's ex-husband got paid late last week, which meant he had money, so he promised his son that he'd come get him for the weekend.  He cancelled the Friday evening pickup, claiming he had to work and promising to pick him up the next day.  Actual pickup time was Saturday afternoon at 3 pm.  No explanation given.  He was driving another new used car, the third or fourth that he's had so far this year.

It was almost an overnight for us, but her daughter's plans for the weekend fell through when the friend she was going to stay with got sick, complications from hypoglycemia.  With no other plans, she was going to stay home, so that put the overnight plans into the "nope" column.  The three of us met for dinner, and then she took her daughter home so she could come over to see me.  We had about four hours of together time, which was reinvigorating.

I shared with her my feelings that the lack of together time this year had been a drain on me.  I also made it clear that I didn't blame her.  I knew she didn't have control of her ex-husband.  But it was also true that I was experiencing severe loneliness due to the unpredictability and infrequency of our time together.  She said she didn't like the way things were for her.  She said she knew we needed time away from the kids so we could talk freely in a way you can't when you're on the phone or texting.  She said was able to "compartmentalize" that and go on, realizing that this was just how things were going to be for a while because she didn't see him getting any better about being there for his kids.

We talked about how we could be more creative about finding time to be alone.  She floated the idea of changing up our weekly dinner night so that instead of me coming to her house, she would come to mine without her kids. She would make them something for dinner and let them eat by themselves.  Her kids are 15 and 12, so they can handle a few hours on their own.

We tried it out this past Wednesday.  I had dinner ready for us and we snuggled after that, spending about three hours together.  I asked her how her kids were dealing with this arrangement, and she said her daughter (the 15 year-old) was OK with it, but the son wasn't happy, complaining that she was probably going to eat something better than what they were having.  Although it hurt to see her go, we were both happy with it, so we will probably make this the new weekly routine.

Got a phone call from X this evening letting me know that when I bring the kids home on Sunday evening, her boyfriend was going to be there and she was going to introduce him to the kids.  She said that the kids know about him, so this wouldn't blindside them.  I guess I will get to meet him as well.  Should be interesting.

Work is still grinding on me.  The project that I was conscripted as tech lead for about a month ago is hitting issues with resource allocation, with a consultant whom they hoped to have lined up not ready to go.  Realizing this, the powers that be have agreed to extend the completion date, which was already way too aggressive.  I'm getting some interest from recruiters, so I've been telling them that I won't be available until the project winds down, which will be most likely October now.
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