Thursday, December 27, 2012


Today more than any other day so far I feel sorry that I chose the father I did for my son. 

Since we split up I've been trying so hard to make sure that T. is a part of Vaughn's life.  I bought a new car so he could have my old one to travel and see our son. I let him come over on his days to spend time with Vaughn and I would go out of the house.  I let him pay me whenever he could because it was better than nothing and neither one of us wanted to go to court.  I never asked for much except that my son's father love our child and spend quality time with him.

I'm increasingly getting more and more disappointed with T.'s inability to get his shit together and just be a good daddy.  He is still living in a guy's spare room and seemingly has no desire to get his own place where Vaughn can go stay with him.  He keeps saying he wants to buy his own place and isn't moving out until that happens.  He says he is trying to save money but he has to pay me so much he is never going to save up enough.  I want nothing more than for him to get his own place, but I fear that is never going to happen.  I don't know if T. even knows how to live on his own. 

Money aside, the thing I'm most disappointed about is that T. is on holidays right now and has been for a week and has seen his son 1 day.  I took Vaughn to my aunt and uncle's place for 2 days for Christmas and T. didn't even call him to wish him a Merry Christmas.  Nothing.  My son didn't hear from his daddy on one of the most special days in a child's life.  Tim didn't send a gift, give a gift or contribute in any way to make Vaughn's Christmas morning happy.  That was done by my family and me.

Today, I was going to drop Vaughn off at 3 so T. could see him and when I sent him a text to confirm times, I got a message back saying he had to cancel today because he had been drinking since 10 AM with his roommate. 

So once again I had to cover for T. because I'm trying to protect my son. Right now, at this time, my son is blissfully unaware of what day of the week he is supposed to see his daddy and for how long.  It's not going to be too long though until he looks at a calendar and sees it's his day with dad and realizes that he doesn't see him as much as he should or for the length of time we agreed upon. 

Funnily enough, I feel sorry for Tim too.  He has no idea what he is missing out on or how much he is fucking up.  Children need someone to look up to and someone to model themselves after.  The last thing I want my son to be is a part-time person in someone's life who feels he can cancel at the last minute or not show up because he "doesn't feel like it". 

I want my son to be a man of honour; a hard-working, genuine, honest man. I want my son to think of others before himself and how his actions effect the people around him.  I also want to stop crying for him because he's so innocent and doesn't realize what is happening.  When I decided to become a parent, I was all-in. 

I know I'm not alone - I am beyond lucky to have the friends and family in my life that I do.  Without them, I don't know what I would do.

I just feel sorry for my little boy and wish I could have done a better job picking his daddy.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Poolside Conversation

So today Vaughn was at his swimming lesson and all 7 kids were wearing life jackets and holding on to their teacher's arms while he was walking across the pool with them.  It was so stinking cute I grabbed my cell phone to take a picture.  At which point one of the moms said "Uh, do you have every parent's permission to take a picture?  You didn't ask me so I don't think you should take the picture".


I then looked at her and asked her why she would say that.  She said she didn't know what I was going to do with the picture and she didn't want her child's face all over the internet.

I suppose I get that, but I also know that we're not in the same circle of friends and chances of someone she knows seeing her kid with my kid are pretty small.  And who cares if they do anyways?  They are 7 sweet little babes all having a blast - who doesn't love pictures of happy kids? 

I said that newspapers don't get permission before they publish pictures of crowds, news cameras don't run around getting waivers before interviewing passersby on the street.  I also said that last time Vaughn was in lessons I posted a picture on the pool's facebook page and didn't get any backlash.  In fact, I got comments about how much fun it looked like the kids were having. I got a dirty look at which point I made a comment about what society has become.

A few minutes later, one of the ladies I have been sat beside for the past few days got on the topic of "kids these days" and she said kids have too much power and can report spanking as abuse.

That got me a little riled up, as I have given Vaughn a smack on the ass on more than one occasion.  It has always been to correct behaviour and remind him that he needs to listen to mommy.  I don't haul off and beat him and I certainly don't do it with anything but my hand. 

Ms Politically Correct then told me that I could be charged by the police for spanking my son.  For real?  I told her to go ahead and call the police - it would be a waste of their time.  My son is well provided for, I love him fiercely and anyone who knows me knows that I am trying my damndest to make sure my son is not an asshole.  I am teaching him to be respectful and kind to others. 

I think there are kids who cry abuse - those ones are looking for attention and don't know how else to get it.  Or they may genuinely be abused, but typically, the ones who are abused don't say much.  Kids who don't get their way and strike out make sure that legitimate cases of abuse go uninvestigated because of their ability to work the system.

Other mommy then went on to tell me that in her Sunday School Nursery if an 18 month old baby is crying they are not allowed to touch them to comfort them - they have to get the child's parents.  I wanted to ask her what kind of church she belonged to because where I come from, people are allowed to hold crying babies.  In fact, just the other day, I was at the mall with my friend and her toddler and newborn.  Her toddler overshot a jump and hit her face on a wall.  My friend was breastfeeding and I immediately cuddled her girl and kissed her head to make her feel better.  My friend was grateful I was there to soothe her babe.  One would think the fellowship of a church would allow the same comfort. 

How do children learn trust and community if we tell them everyone is horrible and out to get them?  I'm trying to teach Vaughn to be cautious, but I love his emerging personality.  I see a leader in him, he is so gentle and loving with babies and other kids.  He knows how to make people smile and is charming.  So I give him a smack on the ass every now and again - I feel it's warranted and I don't need to hear that I'm abusing my son.  Get a grip lady. 

Next thing I know, the kids are on their way back across the pool on Colton's arms and 2 of the other moms are snapping away with their cameras.  I looked at Ms. Politically Correct and told her she better go get them to delete their pictures.  Grandma snorted but the mother who never ever once ever has spanked her child gave me a shut up look.

Making friends all over the place.

I understand we have our differences when it comes to parenting, but I sincerely believe we have gone too far the other way.  Children need boundaries, need discipline and in my case, an occasional tap on the rear.  I know it's not best to spank out of anger, but I do it to get my son's attention.  It works for me. It doesn't work for everyone, but it works for me.  I'm actually at the point now where I just need to ask Vaughn if he needs a smack and he knows he has to correct his behaviour. If he doesn't, he knows there is a consequence. 

Of course, I had to do a little research when I got home.  Turns out that Canada has a law that allows parents and guardians to use moderate force when deemed necessary if it is to correct or modify a child's behaviour.

Oh what?  You mean I'm allowed to parent my child?  Phew!

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Mean Girls

My friend Candice is in town.  I used to play rugby with her and we became quite close.  She moved away to London, England and right now is of no fixed address as she gets to travel the world and have some great experiences.  For example, she got to dance in the opening ceremonies of the Olympics.  How many people do you know that can say that?

The problem with her being here such a short time is that she doesn't get to see all of her friends one on one and wanted to get a group of people together for a dinner last night.  When I saw a few of the ladies that were going, my heart went up into my throat a little.

You see, I used to play rugby with these gals.  I thought we were all friends, but it came to light when I moved back to Calgary 5 years ago that apparently we were not.  That hit me hard - one of the girls even said she didn't have the energy for the type of friendship we had.  WHAT?  I still don't get that.  And I know I'm the topic of conversation occasionally with that group of friends - hard to know that I'm the butt of their jokes and not able to defend myself.

So, fast forward to last night.  I was obviously there to see Candice and not the mean girls and was hoping that enough people would be there and I wouldn't have to interact too much with them.  Not so.  Candice's one other friend showed up but she was very late and had 2 small children in tow.  Vaughn was actually close to where we were but with Tim so I didn't have him to offer as a distraction either.

It actually went quite well I thought.  Who knows, they might have had all kinds of things to say about me after I left, but I'm in such a different place right now and have such an awesome life that I felt very confident and didn't give a shit whether they like me or not.  It was extremely liberating and refreshing. 

Maybe the fact that I had such a great afternoon helped me too - I had a follow up visit with my surgeon yesterday.  My liver levels have gone right back down to normal, I've lost 16 kg (36 lbs) and I feel fantastic!  I just came back from a lovely vacation with my gorgeous son and my job couldn't be going better.  Life is good and I don't have time for mean girls. 

I just don't have the energy for that type of friendship. HA!

Wednesday, July 4, 2012


Vaughn started swimming lessons on Monday morning.  First time doing something unparented - he's growing up so fast!!  He started in the Sea Otter class and will move to Salamander and then Sunfish and that will be it for the summer.

I decided to take him to an outdoor pool for lessons.  I grew up with an outdoor pool - swimming was a summer thing.  I don't really like indoor pools, as they are never refreshing, smell of chlorine and are incredibly noisy. 

One of the reasons I gave when asked why I didn't want to be a parent was that I would have to go where there are other people's children.  Now I've changed my mind - I don't like going to these places because of other children's parents.

There are 2 particular mothers of kids in Vaughn's class that need to reread the lesson policies they signed off on. Rule 6 states:

"Parents and other children are asked to sit at least 12 feet away from the pool edge/deck so adequate space is available for teaching groups & instructors""

Yesterday, one mom stood at the edge of the deck talking to her son and the teacher the whole time.  The. Whole. Time. Today, same mother and her friend were sitting about 2 feet away from the edge of the pool and in the middle of the class, one mother started talking to the teacher because she thought her precious little swimming angel was too advanced for the class and could he move to the next level?  Seriously?  Shut it off and talk to the instructor after the class is over.

The kids are in a class.  A CLASS - this means you go somewhere and let the teacher teach.  I'm so happy your kid can put his head under the water, but his flutter kicks are crap and trust me, he's not THAT advanced.  I used to teach swimming lessons and no fear does not equal a wonderful swimmer.

And other lady - if your kid is going to scream when someone even looks at him, maybe you should remove yourself so he doesn't get the attention he is so obviously used to getting.  Or wait a little while to put him in lessons.  It's disruptive.  You're disruptive - having the whole class wait while you try and appease your child is annoying. 

Could you please also both stand back?  A half hour isn't too long to let your child go and have fun with a group of other kids.  I know it's hard - but you have to let the instructor deal with it.  If you don't, your kids will never respect authority and then we're all in for a world full of entitled little brats.

Okay, I feel better now.  I have to go let my kid run in traffic.


Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Single and Hating It

Being a single parent sucks.  Sure, there's lots of positives and I'm single for good reason, but I can't even begin to tell you how lonely I am right now.  I reach out to my friends and everyone is busy.  Busy busy busy.  Well, I'm busy too but I always seem to be able to make time for my friends.

I was so excited to move to the north end of the city because that's where most of my friends live.  I actually see them less now - I'm just stuck out in the boonies with no one to hang out with but my son.  The one friend I did lots of stuff with lives way south and I don't see her much anymore.

I'm glad my friends have fulfilling lives, but I just wish there was a little room in their life for me.  I struggle so much and really don't have anyone to talk to.  I want Vaughn to grow up around other kids, lots of other kids.  He's a sweet, fun and gentle boy and I feel bad that he doesn't have a best friend because nobody has time for us.

Facebook is a horrible thing sometimes - nobody feels like they have to see people anymore because we live our lives so publicly.  Maybe if I wasn't on there people might actually call or stop by once in a while to see how we're doing.  

I'm just going through a blah phase - I know it's not me - people have lives and I get that.  It's just when everyone is so consumed with their world all at once and there we are - just a pair of misfits - it can't help but make me hurt.  

Plus I'm sad my work sister is leaving to move to Vancouver.  She's been my buddy for a long time and we are like 2 peas in a pod.  We go for lunch together almost every day and are good friends outside of work.  However, she has 5 kids so you can imagine how much I see her (not very is the correct answer).

Most of all, I miss having a companion.  Someone who is there at the end of the day to give me a hug and make me feel better.   Someone who tells me they liked what I made for dinner and someone else to look after Vaughn while I have a much-deserved night out.  I don't get that anymore unless I pay a babysitter $10/hour and actually have someone to do something with. I've done that once in the last 6 months and I went out with a client.  

I don't want anyone's pity, I just wanted to get my feelings down in my place.  What made this sadness come about is the most beautiful story of love that I witnessed over the weekend.

I walked in the Relay for Life and this year had the honour of being our team captain.   A chap from our IT department joined the team with his wife, who I came to learn was in remission from breast cancer for the second time.  Jimmy (not his real name) is very quiet at work.  He's a man of faith and is not afraid to share that with people.  When sharing the story of his wife's struggles, tears welled in his eyes.  You could tell there was pure love in that household.

We all got to the event and Jimmy and his wife started walking.  The rules of the relay are that someone from each team must be on the track at all times - there is no set time.  However, you're encouraged to walk as much as possible.  It rained off and on most of the night (mostly on) and Jimmy didn't just stroll or plod around the track - he walked with purpose.  He was a man on a mission, a hero for his wife who has suffered immensely.  He walked all night, stopping for bathroom breaks and nothing more.  He walked in the rain, without an umbrella.  He didn't stop until they announced the relay was over.

He made me believe in love again and at the same time made me profoundly sad because it was obvious I never had real love with Tim to begin with.  The real love I have is with my beautiful son and he's the best thing in my life.  But I yearn for the kind of love that Jimmy and his wife have - I want a man to walk all night in the hopes that my pain and the pain of others will end.

When you see something someone else has, it's hard not be jealous.  And when your friends all have amazing husbands and families they are busy with, it hurts.  I am happy for them, I truly am, I just wish I could have it too. 

I wish I was their kind of busy.