"Make sure that what you are doing and striving for is going to be worth any sacrifices you will have to make along the way. If it's a relationship, job, anything in life."

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Making the best of what sometimes comes your way…


             I’ve learned over the past few years being a single Dad that I have to sometimes accept what my life now is and when I see Quinn.  What I mean by this is, when I signed the divorce papers I’ll admit I didn’t read them over closely and though we would work more together on the side.  In fact when I got the papers and my layer advised to change some things being blinded by love still I didn’t change a thing.  Looking back now I realize it was a mistake.  Now I also know I can always go back and look over the paperwork and have a lawyer try to change things but today’s post is about sometimes looking at how you have it and seeing if the battle is worth fighting for. 

            This past thanksgiving I didn’t have Quinn.  The way the papers read are as follow, for thanksgiving we switch years.  On odd years I have her on my scheduled Wednesday and into Thanksgiving.  I have to have her home at 6 on that thanksgiving.  On even years my ex has her, plus she has her on my Wednesday so she can travel to see family.  The issue I brought up to her in the beginning was if her weekend follows her year of having her, I won’t see Quinn at all for about a week and a half, and I wont see her around Thanksgiving or even near it.  She told me, off the record that’s we would make it so the person who doesn’t have her that next weekend get’s her thanksgiving.  That way we both can see her.  I questioned this because I knew every year after Thanksgiving it would be her weekend, but I trusted her.  Something I now know I can not do...

            Tuesday before Thanksgiving she texted me saying she had Quinn on Wednesday because it was her year.  I reminded her about our side deal.  The one that doesn’t matter I guess and she reverted to the court papers.   At first I was really upset and figured she would do this one day.  The days to follow I tried not to think about it  and even though about just going back and getting things like “travel” time revered.  As I sit now and write to you all I will tell you I just moved on from it.  I understand it was my fault for not fighting the paperwork before we signed and I made my bed, so now I got to sleep in it.  I want to give you all a few tips. 

1)    First always read anything that comes your way, epically if it’s your divorce papers.  If you don’t like something or feel right about it, don’t sign.  If you go to trial, then go.  I felt rushed, do not feel rushed!  Take you’re time and make sure you feel you are both getting rights epically with it comes to your kids.
2)    If you find you don’t like the deal and you already signed, think about why you didn’t change it and then try to realize you just have to work with that change for now at least.  You can always go back it just depends on if you want to use the resources.
3)    Always fight for your child, but don’t let them grow up thinking all you do is fight.  Fighting to see them is important, but showing them you are also relaxed is very important.  It shows them you roll with the punches sometimes.  Remember as much as your Ex puts you through hell, your kids will test you even more.
4)    If you feel you are being taken advantage of over time then think about going back and having the agreement looked at or changed.  Let your Ex know just because the papers are signed, that doesn’t mean it over for life and settled.  In the court system you can always go back and revert and change and edit things.  Just think about if you want too.
5)    Remember that your child will grow up and eventually make their own decisions.  Let them see you as parent that loves them and they will enjoy spending more time with you on their own.


So the week came and went and I took the time to just relax and spend my time with family and friends.  It was difficult at times not seeing my little one but I don’t think about what I can’t do but what we will do.  Make the most of the time you have with you’re kids and always know being there for them and just loving them is all they want.  Do this and they will enjoy their time with you and as they grow up they made make the decision to see you more it will be up to their choice.  So please don’t ruin your relationship with them now by fighting, when they grow older they will see this and decide to spend less time with you.  So I made the best of the sisuation and I moved on.  I see Quinn this Wednesday and the following weeking.  I made plans for us and can’t wait to show her how much I missed her.  I look forward to sharing our adventures with you!


Always remember,
You are never alone….

Monday, November 26, 2012

Alpha and Omega…

             A few post ago I went up to the camp with some friends and enjoyed the time away to just relax.    While I was there I had some final things to close out for my marriage.  It has been since November of 2009 since it all started and now 3 years later I feel I have learned so much.  I have been over my divorce on all levels over a year ago, but I had some final things I decided to close out.  I decided to wait till we arrived at the camp to properly say goodbye and close out the rest. 

            The phrase Alpha and Omega to me is very significant.  Coming from someone who believes there are rituals when going through life.  I didn’t take my ring off till about 2 months after the final papers were signed.  I knew once it came off it would never go back on.  I also knew I wouldn’t be able to take it off so I requested the help of one of my highest advisors to help me.  Again just an example of what this post is about.  I found going through my time everyone is different, some people just sing and move on, some take longer, everyone has their own path.  I found I usually like to gather around the people that are deep, talk about closure in their blogs or daily life.  I have a few friend I met online that have many closing out post and talk about how now the can move on and feel they ended a chapter or two the way the felt they had to.  I am also explaining this because I don’t want my readers to think what I am about to talk about is me relapsing.  I am fully over my divorce, I just had some final things to close out and I wanted to take some time to share them with you…

            When I moved into my home I used some of the things from our marriage in my daily life, and yes I don’t think twice.  I collected all the smaller things we had, including the divorce papers and put them in a safe place.  I keep them because Quinn will always have the right to see them.  There were two items however I felt I had to close out but they were too big.  I call them my Alpha and Omega…

            Alpha:  Growing up my parents hung a memory box up in our family room.  It is still there today, as we grew up we filled it with little things that we found or just came across.  It is an old printer’s box, now it is very full and there are almost no spots left.  We even used the top to hold items, it was that packed.  Growing up I knew I always wanted one.  When I got married on our honeymoon we went antique shopping and I found one.  I already talked to my Ex about it and she thought it was a cute idea.  It was our first married purchase.  We took it home and hung it up and put a few small things in it to start its growth.  This is my alpha because it was the beginning, our first married purchase and the start of our life.

            Omega:  Now my Omega isn’t really as symbolic but I still feel it is something important.  While we were married she bought me a sweatshirt from my old college.  She new I needed a new one and found one I really liked.  It was comfortable and something I really enjoyed.  I was a skater after all.  For those that don’t know skaters/snowboards love their hoodies…  I also call it my omega because days before our breakup stated she wore it.  She never wore any more my stuff so I probably should have known something was up, but I laugh for that’s nothing to think about. 

            When I got settled in my new home all alone I saw these two items that were pretty much the beginning and end of my story.  I didn’t want to keep them because I felt the memory box was something we needed to fill, and I just knew it was time to retire them both.  I didn’t want to give them away because it wasn’t someone else’s memory box, it was ours.  I knew I wanted to retire them like an old flag, properly with respect.  The weekend we went up to the camp I took some time to relax and remember some of the memories I had and sat by the fire and got ready to fully close out that chapter.  I took a few things out of the memory box that I had in there from events that didn’t take place with the marriage and went over to the fire.

            I set the memory box on the fire and watched as the flames slowly took over.  There were still some things in it but I let them go with the box…  As the flames curved over the edges and slowly engulfed the box I saw empty holes that will never be filled.  I saw memories fade and slowly turn to ash.  A life time of memories that weren’t even started yet burned before my eyes.  The box started to break apart and I saw a future of laughter and memories crumble in the flames…  I placed the sweatshirt on top and the flames grew and took over.  I looked on as the flames took them both and returned them to the earth.  I was over my marriage but I still looked on with sad heavy eyes as the feeling of failure took over.  I say and watch both items break apart.  Those boxes will never be filled again; there will no longer be any days of walking with the shirt on laughing or just relaxing at home.  Hughey sat with me and was there if I needed him.  He understood what I was doing and supported me the whole time. 

            As the fire slowed down all that was left was some mixed ashes and memories that faded out into the cold night sky…

It was finished…



            As I said before I did start my life over a while back and have grown stronger since.  This moment in time was just difficult because I knew it was coming and seeing the pieces of history just remained me I may never marry again I may end up alone.  It reminded me how much I wanted children but only have one child.  It strengthens my fear of trust and companionship and makes me nervous of even the slightest of touches from someone who tries to get close.  I now life my life and try to just be the best Dad I can be.  I made my bed, now I have to sleep in it.  I go on and wonder about the paths now ahead of me.  I do know that I will continue to write my story and help anyone who feels they are here.  I also posted this because this is a site for single parents but also anyone that needs some help or guidance on divorce.  I have said to my readers before that I sill post on divorce because the blog is ended to help those going through it.  Just because I am over mine and stronger, doesn’t mean everyone else is…

            I made the video below after the divorce started.  I’m not exactly sure why I made it.  In the beginning I guess just to show my ex what we had and if it was really worth giving up.  I showed her eventually when I finished it.  She said it was sad, not really what I was going for but I guess that is part of it.  I was just trying to go deep.  Maybe I’m wrong.  If you are viewing this post from an email or phone, and want to see the video just go to the site it’s self.  It is at the end of this post.  I don’t want people to think however I am backtracking.  It was a difficult decision the video is very personal and I didn’t put it up to say I miss what I had.  I just wanted to close out this section and let people know that closing out is a part of life.  If you end something or close it out the way you need to then do it.  There is no shame in that at all.

            For anyone reading this that I know I want to say thank you for all your support and love.  The past three years have been difficult but I have rebuilt my self and carry on.  For anyone that I may not know I hope if you feel this way that you aren’t scared or embarrassed.  Going through something like this is horrible and unless you have been divorced or in this spot it’s something you just can’t understand.  I hope you haven’t either.  The less that have the better…

            So I say farewell and I move on with my life, do I still have to pick up Quinn and work with her Mom, of course.  I just know that over the past few years I have grown stronger and fully know I am in a place where I feel good and will continue to move on…


Always Remember,
You are never alone…

Love Christopher  





video

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Tuesdays Tip: Trying not to laugh…


             Now they say laughter is the best medicine, and trust me coming from this single dad it is.  I don’t know if I’ll ever grow up... Yes I have a lot of responsibility and a home but I can’t help but feel something’s are just too funny… 

            What I am referring to is when you have to be strict and your child say or does something that just makes you bite your lip so you don’t laugh.  The past few weeks when I have told Quinn “No” or that it was time for bed she would sigh very loud or grunt like she was annoyed.  I can’t help but turn so she doesn’t see me laughing.  No typically with a small child you would think they would cry or put up a fight but to see this little person just almost complain in an adult fashion just makes me laugh.  Like life is just so hard isn’t it little one…  Playing all day, taking naps, not working… UGH what a drag… lol  If we are out she may also throw in a “awe okay daddy”  if we can’t do something she wants.  I keep my composure and just keep pressing on.  I know if I laugh its over and she will know I think its funny.  I usually grunt back and tell her she’s fine…  Keeping the line drawn is literally in the sand.   Our children are like the water that comes in and washed it back.  We have to wake up everyday and instill rules and guidelines to keep them protected and safe. 

            I tell everyone the minute you become a parent, even if you don’t have your child you are still just a little different.  You are always feeling responsible and having that guys/girls night out is never like it once was.  We have to instill that we are the bad guys.  Yes I know I said it.  Parents are the "bad guys".  We are the ones that tell them when bed time is, or to eat healthy.  We break up the late night parties and take away the sugar.  I will post more on this later.  I just wanted to say when your child does things that are funny but you have to instill rules, you must not laugh.  The minute they see you laugh you are done!  That rule is over pretty much.   My daughter also says “are you tricken me daddy?”  Which I also think is just so funny…  Sometimes I say no, others I laugh and say yes.  The first time I heard that I couldn’t stop laughing she said it in this cute little voice. 

            I guess there is no real rule for this.  I mean when our kids say things we will laugh.  It is just how life goes.  I would just recommend that over time we still set the stage because as parents we still have to be the rule enforcers…I think secretly its okay to laugh, just don’t let them see you! As we grow we learn and that’s all we can do…


Always remember,
You are never alone…

Love,
Christopher

Monday, November 19, 2012

The Weekend Update!

     Well the weekend has come and gone and again I find my self on my couch thinking about the fun we had.    Hughey came over for a movie this past Friday and dinner.  We ate our fish and settled in for some TV.  Quinn is getting really good at going up to bed and not complaining.  She may grunt or put up a small fight, but she goes up.  She says her goodbye's and then I carry upstairs and brush our teeth. Then we read some books and listen to music as I rock her to sleep.  I have to say she is getting big, holding her in my rocking chair is getting difficult but ill never get up.  Rocking her still is one of my favorite things.  Taking the time to just hold my little girl and spend a few minutes to just to have her in my arms before she grows up.  I always rock her extra long because how of special our time is.

     The next day we all had breakfast and put our movie we got on.  We rented the Lorax.  It was so cute and Quinn loved it.  The story was about a boy that learns about the history of how they lost tree's.  I won't spoil it for you but in the end I was moved.  That day we took some time to do some coloring, playing with our toys and taking a good nap!  That night Hughey, my Mom and I took Quinn to our churches annual chili cook off.  We had so much fun!  I was on vestry when it started and am so excited that it's been over ten years and it is still going strong.  Quinn was so excited to see all the people, she was so excited to see Vicki our minister.  She loves to hug her and talk to her.

     After we stopped over to the back nice to see my work buddy Weaver!  Alicia has known Quinn from other work events and she was excited to see her.  Quinn is so cute she warms right up.  It was a restaurant and she was bar tending.  We hung out for a second and then went home.  Sunday Quinn and I relaxed and just took it easy.  We have a big week ahead of us and just relaxed.  Some days it's good to just catch up on relaxing...

Here we all are!

Weaves and the munch!

     With the weekend over and Thanksgiving coming up I'm real excited.  I hope everyone had a great weekend.

Love,
Christopher

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Tuesday's Tip: Checking your emotions at the door


          This section I plan on working on a lot over my years of blogging.  Keeping your emotions in check is something we need to do for any reason.  Sometimes single parents have to work harder because they have to drop off and pick up their kids which can be extremely difficult.  We also have to see the Mother or Father of our child and the can bring up emotions of sadness, anger or even love sometimes.  I look forward to blogging about how to keep our emotions in check over the next few years.  I also would love some ideas, or any help so if you read this please let me know some pointers I would love to add them in.   I also will give some examples of my life and if you would care to share any please do so we can only help each other by what we know and have experienced... 

            I will start with the beginning.  As a single parent when everything “goes down” we will feel so many different emotions.  When I use the term goes down I mean either divorce or separation/break up.  The next few months to a year are going to be a rollercoaster and for me it was very difficult.  We lived in the same home as well as had a daughter together.  I admit I was all over the board; I’ve never been through a divorce and never seen one.  If you are living together then I urge you to try to keep your emotions in check.  Now being further along in my blog I won’t back track and I am working on getting some information updated on my blog about emotions and going through a divorce up soon.  I will start by saying when you move out, or your partner does this is when your emotions will go in different directions.  When I first moved out I was a little bit of everything.  I had a new place, my ex and I were getting along, I had Quinn that first weekend, and things weren’t bad.  Then however when I had to bring her home, I realized I was alone in this place all by my self.  I got lonely and very sad fast.  I called my ex a lot or talked to family and the first few months were just extremely difficult. 

           
            I was having a hard time keeping my emotions checked at the door and often would get Quinn and be sad or upset because I wasn’t used to only seeing her for such a short period of time.  It was very hard I won’t lie, what I found saved me were a few different things. 

1)    Time:  I am sorry but it just takes time.  As time goes on you will learn how to deal with not seeing your child as much.  I really hate to say that because it is awful but you adapt.  Never fully but for the most part you do.  You start to realize the time you have is very precious and you find great projects and adventures to do and go on.
2)    Family:  Visit family and friends and keep busy by enjoying the company of others to keep your mind busy
3)    Work:  Find a second job or volunteer.  You may need too, I had too. 
4)    Keep busy:  Clean your place, go out and see people.  Do things on your free time to keep busy and enjoy your free time. 
5)    Have Faith:  If you have a religious setting in your life lean on it.  If not, just have fait that things will get better.  Be positive, if you have a person of faith in your life call and meet with them.  They will be very helpful. 

There are others and I will add them over time.  I am sorry in the beginning it will be hard and because of this your emotions may over flow and you will start to show them to friends or family, your ex or even at work.  I felt the biggest was just time, as time goes on you will grow stronger and adapt. Pretty soon you will be getting your child and on your way.  I will admit you never really master emotions, when I pick up Quinn it can be hard.  I see the home I put a lot of time effort, work and even money into.  My ex and I didn’t work out but sometimes we laugh and joke with Quinn when I get her and knowing we will never be a couple again sometimes I leave heavy hearted.  There were good times before all this happened.  I usually just take a deep breath and move on.  Take Quinn home and get ready for the weekend.  Call a friend and have dinner, watch a movie and just hold my daughter.  When I bring her home sometimes I will go to church when it’s empty and pray.  Sit and listen to the stillness of the room as I close my eyes and gather my thoughts.  My family says we can only move forward, I say you’re right, but it doesn’t always have to be easy…

I look forward to making more installments of this section as well as adding to the main part of my blog that I am currently working on.  For now I encourage you to please be calm and relaxed.  Don’t show your emotions in front of you child for they will catch up on them and we need to be strong for them, they are our future. 

Whoever you are and wherever you maybe, if you are reading this please always know…

You are never alone… 

Love,
Christopher   

Sunday, November 11, 2012

A day in the leaves

     Yesterday my Mom and I headed over to the church to help rake up the leaves.  Every year we try to get the leaves on the church lawn raked up so it's ready for the winter.  The church sits on about 5 acres of land and there are many trees that are on the property.  The leaves can get very intense in the fall.  So for about 3 hours 15 of us got the lawn cleaned and raked up!  We had the leaves put on the sides of the road and someone will come and get them this week.

     The past few years I have been very busy with both my jobs, Quinn and just keeping the house in order.  I haven't had much time to help with church events so when this event came up I was excited to help out.  It was nice to get back in the game and help out.  My church is very important in my life and taking a few hours to help out was the least I could do.  It was nice at lunch to catch up and talk as well.  Trying to get back in the game to help out and be more active is something I really want to do and hope as time goes on I can get back in the game more.  Until then I am just taking my time and going at a good pace.

     Here are some great pics of our day!

Love,
Christopher

Getting Started!







We worked together to get the job done.


There was a lot of yard to cover.


It looked great after.


We raked a lot of leaves.






Taking a small break to just relax.

Getting lunch ready.



Almost done!

Here we all are.

 

Friday, November 9, 2012

Any ladies creative as this... please call me!

   
     So when I saw this commercial I totally said, "thats the girl you gotta marry!"  I just laughed and though it was finally good to see something creative and funny.  I think you know what part of this video I'm talking about too...   I have to say creativity is a cornerstone to a relationship.  I'm sure you have seen it but if you haven't here it is...


Thursday, November 8, 2012

The Weekend Update

     This past weekend was a cold and rainy one, but it didn't slow us down!  Friday after I picked up Quinn we went home and got Hughey to start HFM!  We went to the Nutcracker for dinner and were joined by my parents.  It was to have dinner with the 5 of us.  Every once and a while Hughey and i have special guest for our fish fry's.  We love going out and just having a nice dinner.  After dinner Hughey and Quinn and I went and got a movie.  I think there are about 1 or 2 blockbuster's left in the county and one is in my town haha.  So we got a movie and headed home.  The rest of the night we just hung in and relaxed.  Friday nights we usually just take it easy and relax from the busy week we had.

     Saturday I had my aunt watch Quinn because we had a funeral to attend to.  A post will come later, but a very near and dear friend from church passed away this past week.  After wards I picked her back up and we went to lunch with the family and friends.  My Mom, Quinn and I went and shared our memories of our lost friend.   Quinn did so good and just a joy to the people there.  She loves hugging everyone and she just brings such smiles to everyone around her.

     The rest of the day we just spend relaxing and keeping warm.  I forgot to mention friday when Hughey and i got home I went to turn on the furnace and the gas wasn't catching!  No heat!!  Well I do have electric heaters but I had to tell Quinn to bundle up it was gonna be a cuddle fest...  We made it and yes just so you know the furnace is good and fixed!  After dinner on Saturday we bundled up and just stayed in.  We went out and did some small shopping, we had to go to Home Depot and get a furnace filter, for my furnace that wasn't currently well, on... lol

     Sunday we got up and went to church and then had some breakfast with Aunt Ro and some of the family after.  Sunday we honestly just relaxed and I got the house cleaned.  She took a long nap and i got all my chores done!   We had some dinner and then headed home.  The weekend was nice and now that it's getting cold out we are getting ready to stay in and work on fun projects or just lay on the couch and watch a good movie.

     The only thing i forgot was I didn't take any pictures! Sorry readers,  I will make up for it don't worry!  As the week drives on I just have to get ready for our next adventure and keep going...

I hope all is well and always remember...

You are never alone...

Love,
Christopher

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Tuesday's Tip: Finding the Time


            Time has passed since I’ve been living on my own and I’ve tried to find the time to do things like clean, cook, workout and just live.  The biggest is cleaning, I used to clean at night or I would clean a part here and there.  Then I started cleaning Sunday nights after I dropped Quinn off at her Mom’s.  I did this for a while but then realized it was tiring and Sunday nights I love to just relax and prep for the week.  So I started some new times and different things. 

            Over time I started cleaning when Quinn would go down for her nap in the afternoon every other Sunday.  I found I would go out Friday with her and Saturday, and then when Sunday would come I would take the day to go to church and then spend the later part of the afternoon relaxing.  I have it down to a great science now.  After lunch I usually start vacuuming and get the down stairs done then work my way up.  When she goes down I usually dust, clean the bathrooms and the kitchen.  Usually when I’m done she is just about waking up and well personally I need a nap then! 

            This past Sunday I worked very hard, moving furniture and just over all deep cleaning.  Changing the beds sheets and did laundry.  Once the house was clean it smelled and looked so nice.  I try this about every two weeks and find it’s a good fit.  I grew up cleaning and my parents raised me cleaning so I’m very happy to live in a nice home I’m proud of.  Living clean is very important and the longer you put if off the harder and more difficult it can be.  I guess there is just something about sitting in my clean living room that makes me feel proud and excited to be a homeowner.

            So my advice is to find time to well do anything, clean, or cook, work out.  I like to clean just because I feel it’s a very important aspect of living.  Also I heard that people that clean and do things around the home live longer.  Something about moving around, keeping busy and active are healthy so get up and clean!  When is the big question…

            So I suggest finding some time when your child is sleeping or quietly playing to get some things done around the house that way you don’t have to do things late at night or early in the morning.  Once you find a time you like and works you will soon be on you’ll way to running you’re house hold with style and ease…  

Monday, November 5, 2012

The Halloween Rap-Up!

     Halloween was such a success!  I picked up Quinn and we headed over to our first stop, my Aunts house.  We got dressed up and rang the doorbell; I got her ready in the driveway.  She went as Bat Girl this year.  If she grows up anything like me then getting ready on the fly will be easy for her.  We hung out with my Aunt for a little and took some pictures.  After we stopped over and saw Uncle Paul.  He was so excited to see us and Quinn just loves her Godfather.  A quick stop at Hughey's to say hello to his Mom and Steve and then we were off!  We did stop at Kevmans but nobody was home. :(    Then we went to my rents house!  We stopped in and took some pictures and hung out a little.  

     I decided to some trick or treating on my old street so my Mom, Quinn and I went out for a little then stopped back and Quinn and I took my dad out.  It was nice to see the old neighbors and just watch Quinn run from house to house.  She was having so much fun she didn't want to stop!  We must have gone to 20 houses!  After getting our candy we had some dinner at my parents and just relaxed a little more before going home and putting our treasures away.  I was so excited this year because Halloween was on my day so I got to take her out.  She was so excited when I picked her up; being my first actual Halloween with her as a single dad I was just overwhelmed with joy to take my little one out.

     Walking from house to house and seeing everyone's eyes light up as they saw Quinn.  I have been getting candy from them for years as a little kid and now I got to see them give candy to my little one.  As the night wound down we relaxed on the couch for some TV and just took it easy.  I got the house in order and we were off to bed.  Dad was tired...   

     I always loved October, Halloween, the leaves changing, Quinn and my birthday.  I can't believe how fast the fall is going and that November is here!  The year is going so fast pretty soon Christmas will be approaching.  

     I hope everyone had a great Halloween this year!
Enjoy the pics!
Here we are!

Aunt Ro and Quinn




Oma, Poppi with Quinn

Trick or Treating

Here she goes!


She loved it, we went to so many houses.

There's my little one.

Time for dinner.

We had to see our Eve Halloween Kitty!!  



In the end we had a great Halloween, saw some family and friends got to get some candy and even celebrate with our kitty.  I will talk to you all soon!

Love,
Christopher