School Starts…What Shadow Should We Cast?

Whenever school is set to begin, it brings to the surface what seems to be long-standing residual feelings in divorce situations. The summer is drawing to a close and the kids are getting another year older which means, we as parents are also another year older.  For some, that means another year closer to the time when we no longer have to deal with the other parent. For others, it rips the bandaid off some old wounds. 

I, for one, really look forward to each new school year. I wonder at the growth the kids exhibit. Because I marvel at how the mind works and I take my responsibility for shaping these young minds very seriously.  For my ex, however, she continues to use this occasion to demonstrate her outright denial of the fact that there is another woman in my life and she loves the kids as if they were her own.  The kids are not immune to the knowledge their mother’s actions are inappropriate. To them, they have 2 moms and if you know anything about them, that’s way better than one! 
My wife (Stepmom) is wonderful in so many ways. Way more than I care to list. One of the things she does so well is help the kids with homework and she is the primary school pickup driver.  She takes the kids to doctor appointments. She is the one they call when they need to get picked up. It affords me the ability, neigh, luxury of being able to focus 100% on my work and now worry about whether I can find time in my day for school pickup. She has been doing this for 2 years now. Last year, I offered for my wife to help my ex on her days to do the pickups – no charge. We simply wanted to help her out. The kids really want to be at home rather than an aftercare facility.  Mom declined. 

We made the same offer again this year. Again, mom declined. She does so at her own expense. To her, she would rather pay money to put them in a place they would rather not be than allow for us to help.  Sad. If the kids are her focus, she would clearly make another decision. 

Now to the school registrations. She believes herself to be 100% Mom. She has a number of redeeming qualities. However, her pride and stubbornness will ultimately  be the downfall of her relationship with the kids.  She took the opportunity to fill out the emergency cards. And who do you think she left off of them when filling it out? 

You guessed it. My wife – the one who picks them up every Wednesday, Thursday and every other Friday.   The one they also call Mom. 

Instead, she chose to put her best friend, my brother and his wife, and her parents! Not a one of them actually takes care of the kids full-time. 

I could tell it was hurtful for my wife to see that on the card and I will be going to the school on Monday to rectify the records. I am annoyed to have to do that when it is a waste of people’s time. No matter what she puts on the card, the kids love my wife with all their hearts and if the focus is on the kids in divorce situations, that should be what drives our actions. Not our egos. Not our issues. Our kids. We must always be mindful of the shadow we cast. She isn’t…

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