Tuesday, June 5, 2012

The Ex Files

I got a mad crush on one of the guys in this picture.

For those of you just joining us,
my children have different fathers.

To further add a twist,
I am currently dating
the father of my eldest son.

We were high school sweethearts in 2000,
broken up in 2002,
accidentally pregnant in 2003,
barely tolerant of each other in the subsequent years,
and for the last few months...
a couple.

Christina and Paul 2.0

In those 10ish years we were apart
we obviously dated other people.

I went on to have another son
and he went on to
not have any more children.

has had it's own feelings to figure out.

We co-existed in a strange realm
where we would have been totally OK
with never, ever speaking again
but instead had to see one another
almost every day.

No matter how much of our non-child related lives
we tried to keep personal,
or how much we didn't want to be around one another,
we shared a son and were thus forced
to take somewhat front row seats to each other's lives.

That means he knows a lot about my ex
and I know a lot about his.

That also means he knows
a lot about the uglier sides of my sunny disposition.

And I his.

All new relationships
exist on the suspended belief that
your new guy or girl is pretty awesome
and almost perfect.

The days go on and you begin
to peel away layers,
uncovering this annoying trait
or that cumbersome piece of emotional baggage.

It is tricky business to already kind of know
what you're getting yourself into.

It is trickier business still
when his ex is a part
of an extended circle of friends
and my ex is the father of my other son.

Honestly tricky is not even the word.

It is getting to know someone
I already know
but don't really  know
all while our skeletons hang everywhere
except in the closet.

I exist in a sort of suspended state
where the past must be forgiven
and mostly forgotten,
and the long time future
is left unplanned and un-discussed
because it can be
terrifying and pressure filled
and really if we were a brand new couple
with only a few months behind us
no one would be asking me
about marriage and co-habitation.

Lay off folks.

And really the only one who
consistently asks me if we're getting married...
is our son.

This little man
who has only known us apart
is trying to reconcile
the latest developments.

And truthfully we've tried to
keep it all separate...

Paul and Christina
starring in

"Mom & Dad"


Paul & Christina

"Grown-Ups who Hang Out and Kiss and Stuff".

But honestly
when parents are under the impression
that they're keeping a secret from their kid
the only ones they're really fooling
are themselves.

'Twas blindingly apparent
a few months ago when
Lucas bounded into the kitchen and asked,
"Are you guys in loooooove?"

All while Paul and I stood
miles away from each other.

I dunno. Maybe.

Kids man.

I mean really I'm not much
of a believer in happily ever afters.
I think relationships are hard
and they take work
and there are no guarantees.

It's gritty, dirty, messy business.

Or so my jaded side believes.

My glitter-wearing,
cotton-candy eating
lovely love self
believes that relationships
are sweetness and laughter
and wanting to be better
for myself and for him.

After all...
not everyone gets a do-over.

I mean if it's gonna be such messy work
I might as well have someone around
that I really, really like.

He is wearing a teeny, tiny pirate hat.  I am wearing the look of love.

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