One of the many issues that were in my marriage was the assumption from my ex that I was always available and able to readily accept any unforeseen change of plans.
Before I continue, let me clearly state that I understand and truly believe that there must be a certain amount of flexibility, cooperation, give & take and all that in a marriage. I get it. And I was. However, in my opinion, it was very one-sided and I began to see myself as a doormat, with not much backbone.
And I HATED that.
Here are a few examples of the last minute changes that were an ever present part of my marriage:
Example 1: Dinner is at 6:00p.m. I get a call at 5:50p.m........"I won't be home for dinner because (insert lame excuse here) - This type of phone was received more times than I could ever remember. It was embarrassing. Dinner is 5 minutes from being ready, table is set and we're just waiting on him to arrive.
It made me feel incredibly insignificant. However, I was very good at quietly ignoring those stupid feelings and hoping things would change. But then the kids started to notice that dad wasn't home for dinner again, and as soon as they started to show signs of disappointment, well that's when the doormat came to life. Because, as always, I can handle anything against me in stride, but once something negatively affects my children, watch out.
Example 2: He says in the morning, "I'll be home by 7:00 tonight".......I get a call at 7:30........."Sorry I won't be home until (insert any hour here, because I stopped listening after the word 'home'). And again when it was just me that was let down, well, it sucked but I was a strong girl and really, really hoped that it wasn't always going to be like that. However, as the kids got older and they would be waiting for dad to come home and I'd get that effing phone call....well mama unleashed.
Example 3: "Sorry, I can't take child to practice tonight as planned because (insert same old, same old here)."
These three examples were the most frequent ones and so unfortunately are still deeply embedded in my memory. There were others but I think I've made the point.
This brings us to today. My little trip down memory lane was sparked by a phone call I received last night.
My children usually spend Thursday nights with their dad. Last night, which was Wednesday, I received a call from him at 10:25p.m. I let the call go to voicemail because I knew I would end up getting annoyed.
The message was, "I'm sorry but I just realized I have a work problem and will need to stay over night in City X tomorrow night, so I won't be able to have the kids."
It's 10:25p.m. You just now realized this work problem?
There was no 'Is it possible for the kids to stay with you?' It was simply, 'I have to do this, so your on your own'.
My response, through text, because I could not listen to his voice was, "I am always more than flexible when it comes to your schedule but really 10:25 at night? Clearly there is zero consideration for anyone other than yourself. Did it occur to you that I might possibly have plans tomorrow night? No, just the usual assumption that I am available."
And just to make it clear this has nothing to do with me having the kids for the night or not. Becasue I am Mom and will drop or cancel anything for them, anytime.
The frustration is simply because in his mind, there is just him and his schedule and his needs.
So, tonight I'll summon up my Go Go Gadget self and get Handsome to football practice at 6:00, get to the library by 6:30 to tutor until 8:00 and then back to pick up Handsome at 8:30. And both kids now will be thrilled to join me for 2 hours worth of tutoring in the library, tomorrow morning.
And really the above schedule is nothing, I've used my Go Go Gadget powers in much more time crunching situations.
But that's not the point. It's the same old, same old routine with him that drives me mad. And, well, it's been many years now so I suppose this is just how he works.
I still don't understand how someone can be so clueless.