Different Paths

Throughout the history of this blog,  I have often referred to the path that I am traveling. A reference to the direction I have chosen for my life, it has been an often rocky and brutal journey the last 3 years or so. With the loss of my mother, and subsequent end to my 15 year marriage, I took a long free fall and have had to climb my way back to the place I find myself in now. And with hindsight being 20/20, I can look back and say every moment of weakness, lapse in judgement, and incredible mistake have led me to his place. So they all were worth it. I have come to compare life to a tiny rubber bouncy ball. You know, the kind that we used to fire at the ground to see how high it would bounce. And what we found is that the harder the hit at the bottom, the higher the rebound would be.

Today my mother would have been 58 years old. We used to celebrate all birthdays in the family at her house. Cake, ice cream, best part, worst part, laughs and love were all staples of these gatherings she would put together. Not to mention the party hats and occasional asthma attacks from her blowing up balloons. At this very moment 400 miles away, my sister, her family, and my father are having a party in her name. I wish I was there with them, but I am sure they know that both mom and I are right there in spirit. I have said many times before that Angelia embodies my mother in so many ways, and I am so proud of the friendship we share. It is a product of both my 3 year journey and hers as well. We found the paths intersected and that, at the end of the day, we are closer than either of us ever thought possible.

I look around at other people in my life and where this journey has taken them. People that I am close to and that have fought their own zig zags along the way in the last 3 years. Ralph begins a new career path tomorrow that looks to take him to new and wonderful places. Brad has met someone and fallen in love, with wedding plans on the horizon. My friends Dave and Sara bought a home and are making a great life for their kids. All of these paths seem to run parallel to my own. My new job looks to take me to new highs I have never seen professionally. I have met the person I was supposed to find and wedding bells will be ringing this summer. And the dream of home ownership is just a stone's throw away.

Then there are the two others I want to speak about tonight. Before I get to their stories, I will reflect on a major turn in the road I have already overcome. My divorce and custody battle lasted almost 2 years. My ex wife and I were locked in a very nasty battle for the first year, then found common ground and eventually settled on the easiest divorce decree that judge had ever seen (his own words).

My friend Bethany went to court to finalize her divorce yesterday. She and her husband separated a few years ago due to irreconcilable differences. They could not find a way to get along. In the time since, both have grown and learned a lot about themselves and the world around them. And though they signed the papers yesterday, they have become very close friends. After court yesterday they spent the day together, sort of a bittersweet closing to what has been coming for a long time. When my divorce was final, I had no desire to spend the day with Angel. Yet, I went home and spent a quiet night with the boys. It is hard to let go, even when you know it is the right thing to do. So I understand where they are at.

What I cannot understand is the polar opposite court date for my brother yesterday. Locked in a bitter custody dispute with his ex girlfriend, his story is something you would likely see on the Maury Povich show rather than on the Hallmark Channel. He has his side, she has hers, and the truth almost certainly lies somewhere in the middle. At 32 and 27 respectively, you would think that they were a couple of 4 year olds arguing about the green crayon at the Kinder Care. He never misses the opportunity to take shots at her on Facebook, in phone calls, or in court. And her retaliation is to not let him see his children. Neither of them are grown up enough to realize what they are doing to their kids.  Both are too self centered and caught up in being right to try to find common ground. I do understand. I was there before myself. I took a lot of shots at the mother of my children when we were in the battle. She did the same to me. But we both out grew it. Now the only thing that has grown from Josh and Chrystal's battle is that everyone else has grown tired of it, present company included. I have to say it is not my drama and not my problem now. I will not address it on this blog anymore, nor do I want to hear about it when you decided to call me nine times while I am at work because your throwing a fit when it didn't go your way. Enough said.

Whew, go off on a tangent there. Where was I again? Oh yeah, the paths lol.

As I have said 100 times before, and will many more, life is fluid. It's funny how we all walk different roads trying to find the same destination. We all want happiness. The paths of those closest to me have had as many twists and turns and changes in the last three years as mine. Tonight, as I think about Mom and wish I could sing Happy Birthday to her, I know she would be proud of where the journey has brought me to now. And I am no where near the end. My little rubber bouncy ball of a life hit rock bottom with the force of meteor last spring, and it's headed up with no arc in sight.

Happy Birthday Mom. Still miss you everyday.............

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