The last 72 or so hours have been tumultuous. I’ve been racking my brain over this divorce settlement – trying to sort out the terms I can live with; the terms that infuriate me to the point that I have no choice but to demand more from; the terms that bother me on principle; and the terms that I have to simply accept for the sake of both my immediate and long-term happiness.
To make matters worse, Jabba is now saying she wants the kid back on December 28; essentially giving her the entire second week of his winter break. This despite her saying she wanted me to have him for the majority of his break. If she wanted to simply switch weeks, I could live with that. I don’t understand the need for her to phrase it as if she’s giving me Christmas as some major self-sacrifice. By this time next year, I am fully confident that the divorce will firmly be in place. Once it is, I’ll proceed strictly by the terms of the final order. No more favors. No more flip-flopping weeks (I say that now).
I talked to LeRoy about the final divorce order last night and he really helped put things into perspective. He reminded me that I’ve got to think in terms of the overall bigger picture. Trying to fight some of these smaller issues on principle could start opening up other proverbial cans of worms that I don’t want to get into – largest among them back child support. Virtually everyone agrees that I got a good deal with child support – and I don’t want to rock the boat, so to speak. Basically, I have to pick and choose not only my battles, but my acceptable losses as well.
Last but not least, I cannot thank The Auteur enough for all of her love and support through this process. If there’s any one trait of hers I’m trying to pick up, it is her ability to compartmentalize things (for the lack of a better word) She has an ability to not let the random bad things that happen sabotage and otherwise good day. I wish I was more like her in that regard. Needless to say, I am still a “work in progress” in that area, but I am trying. Like all couples, we disagree and fight at times, but we always have each others backs. We love each other and are definitely in this together for the long haul.
Earlier in the evening I talked with my Mom about the whole Christmas break switcheroo. She reminded me at The Kid’s age, Christmas is THE important holiday and it really is important to have it with him and that I need to – again – think of the bigger picture.
I wasn’t really happy at the end of the conversation with Mom. I was feeling quite defeated actually. At that point, one would think that the talk I had with LeRoy would only make me feel even worse; but a strange sense of calm came over me. I think I have finally reached the point that this divorce ruling is something I can live with. I’m not sure how it happened, or when; but I’ve think I’ve truly come to terms with this whole thing.
- Don’t forget your 30 pieces of silver. (dalrock.wordpress.com)
With the Boy’s Easter break about 6 weeks away, I called the STBX last night to discuss visitation. Here’s a paraphrasing of said conversation – to the best of my memory:
Me: So the Boy’s Easter break is coming up. Under the separation agreement that you had written up, I get him for his entire break, right?
X: No, that’s not what I remember.
Me: Well, I don’t have it in front of me, but that is what it says.
X: We don’t have an agreement.
Me: We’ve been going by the agreement that you had written up.
X: You never signed it.
Me: Really, X? You’re gonna do this every time it’s my turn to see him? Fine. I’ll call my lawyer first thing Monday morning and I’ll set up a visitation hearing.
X: I already made plans to take him to Legoland that week.
Me: Maybe you should’ve checked that with me first. I’ll have my lawyer set up a hearing. We’ll get all this set in stone.
X: Be sure to talk to him about child support too! hangs up phone
Typical. Whenever she gets frustrated, she hangs up on people. Her parents, her siblings, me. I’m not really sure why she wants me to talk to my lawyer about child support. That would be like a murderer asking his/her attorney: “hey how much time should I do? 10? 15 years?”
Again, she tries to go back on a separation agreement that SHE had written up.
She doesn’t get it. She’s not in charge of this thing anymore. And that scares the hell out of her.
All in all, this is a week I would really like to forget. SHG blows me off. Ivy makes her move. The STBX descends further into the role of the stereotypical bitchy ex-wife. Never have I ever looked so forward to Monday…
I did it.
I sent out THE PAPERS on Friday afternoon following a brief conversation the STBX and I had while I was at bowling on Thursday. She asked me where the separation agreement was and then tried to lecture me on legal proceedings. I even told her that my lawyer informed me that she hadn’t filed anything yet.
To me, it’s not really a big deal which one of us files papers and gets this divorce thing started. It is a big deal to her, or at least, it was. “I am the one who was wronged” she said to me before I moved out.
It felt very empowering to go to the post office and mail off those papers. It’s probably the first time I’ve felt as if i’m in control of this whole situation. And that is a very nice place to be for a change.
I am expecting some kind of fallout from this. It’s inevitable. Actually, the big surprise if there was no backlash.
Oh and incidentally, Friday was November 2. Exactly seventeen years to the day that the STBX and I met…
As the calendar creeps ever-closer to Halloween, it has occurred to me that I need to start making travel plans for the holidays, either for my son, myself, or for both of us. About a month or so ago, I suggested to the SBTX that we alternate visitations for Thanksgiving and Christmas – as most divorced families do. She was okay with it, and that was the last we said about it.
Last night, my son called me crying. Sobbing actually, asking me to “come home” because he wants to see me. I explained to him that I needed to talk to his mom about that very thing. He was pretty worked up and tired so he got off the phone. Since I’ve been looking into making a trip to South Carolina sometime in November, I decided to call the STBX a little while later. She seemed okay with me making a trip down next month, but somehow we got on the subject of lawyers, and how neither one of us have been served papers yet. Like most conversations with her, this one left me frustrated.
IMPORTANT SIDE NOTE: I‘ve been saying to my family for the last several weeks that I didn’t think the STBX had filed any papers with her lawyer. In fact, I’ve begun to doubt if she even retained a lawyer as she claimed.
As these thoughts weighed heavily on my mind, I decided to e-mail my attorney. I asked him straight-out Where do I go from here. Thursday morning, they e-mailed me saying they hadn’t heard from the STBX’s attorney. The e-mail also included papers for me to sign so that I can file for the divorce.
ANOTHER SIDE NOTE: Before I moved out of the house in South Carolina, we had discussed how we were going to proceed with the separation and divorce. Initially, we had agreed to a no-fault divorce. She wanted to go through a lawyer she had chosen. I told her there was no way I was doing anything without my own representation. She resisted this idea, saying that two lawyers would make this a “contested” divorce and it could get expensive and “messy” in her words. When I suggested we could go my lawyer (the one I ultimately retained) she vehemently refused arguing that she was “the one who had been wronged” and insisted on filing the divorce herself.
Back to the present: Since nothing has been filed yet, I have the opportunity to “flip the script” (as the kids would say) on her. The only reasons I could think that she wouldn’t have filed are:
- she didn’t want to spend the money
- she never thought I would leave in the first place
I’ve stated on here before that I don’t see us ever getting back together. For me to even consider reconciling with the STBX, our relationship would have to undergo a seismic shift; not only in what our relationship currently is, but also what it once was. I would not and will not consider returning to the status quo. Frankly, I don’t forsee such an event occurring. Furthermore, i haven’t even given it the notion very much thought.
In any event, this is an unexpected development. One that I wasn’t prepared for. This could make for a bumpy holiday season.
- Wevorce – A startup that hopes to make divorce easier (i453ethics.wordpress.com)
Every day, I am reminded that divorce is never as easy as anyone thinks or says it is. The STBX used to say that she would want things to be as amicable as possible if we ever split up. That of course was all pillow talk during the so-called “good old days”.
I asked my brother, who is also an attorney but not family law, to look over the separation agreement she had prepared. Overall, he said it looked like pretty standard stuff. He suggested i ask her to make a change to visitation. He recommend, with her being out of state, that I ask for more time during the summer in exchange for less time during the school year.
Once again, her audacity never ceases to amaze me. She had the temerity to say that she “already doesn’t get to spend time with [our son]”.
Amazing considering I live 850 miles away from him; and her room is right down the hall from his. But in her eyes, she is the victim. She is, she says, “the one who was wronged”.
NOTE TO SELF: this is a reminder to put together a list of her most ridiculous one-liners. this would make a good blog entry.
I’ve put this off long enough. It’s time for a lawyer.
- Taking Hurt Out Of The Holiday When Parents Are Divorced (detroit.cbslocal.com)