I knew it when I was married to him and I see it even more clearly now. But with this announcement comes yet another change to my children's lives and family unit. In less than three years they have gone from living with their mom and dad to only their mom and meeting their dad's girlfriend to now accepting her as their stepmother. So though what he does with his life affects me not at all, I have to deal with it for the sake of my children. When the ex-husband gets married, it is a family matter.
The thing is, regardless of what I think of this man and his choices, I have to put them aside to be there for my children. As he walks down the aisle again, marrying for the wrong reasons again, I have to answer the questions and work with the confusion to make my children more comfortable with the event. They already are asking if they should call this woman mom. They don't want to and know that I am their one and only mom, but as I see the concern on their little faces and wipe the tears from their faces, it bothers me. It bothers me to the point that I want to call him up and unleash the mama bear protective side of me.
But I can't. Mainly because it is not my place to do so and because the arrogant side of him will think I am doing it because I am jealous of him and his pending nuptials. My absolute loss of respect for this man who chose to sow his wild oats while married makes that the furthest from the truth. Unfortunately, however, as the ex-wife, anything I say or do that is not in total support of his life choices will be seen as bitter in his eyes.
So how do I deal with my ex getting married when my children are still asking when he is coming home? How do I help my children understand that they are not second best when he has more children and spends more time with them than the ones he made first? How can I show acceptance and understanding for his choices when I think they will adversely affect my own children?
I just do.
That is the simple answer. With grace and dignity and a dedication unmatched by any other person in my children's lives, I fulfill the role of mother, father, therapist, conversationalist and explanation holder. When the excitement of the wedding and them being flower girls fades and they are back to being pushed off on his new wife as they are now while he goes out with friends and pursues his own lifestyle, I will resolve to being the parent that is the constant, the mainstay, the holder of where they are safe and comfortable.
When he has more kids and the new wife is preoccupied with her own offspring and he leaves them with her while he continues to explore a bachelor lifestyle and they sit in front of the TV all day because she is busy, I will be the one that hugs them tight and fills the holes of discord that will come with weekends with him.
When the ex-husband gets married it has nothing to do with me. But it has everything to do with my children. As their mom, I can only be there and love them. Because I am not the ex-wife anymore but I am the children's mother always.
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