Today, I made a mistake.
It’s a mistake I continue to make over and over again. I break my own rules. And as a result, I end up hurting someone I love beyond measure.
I posted my “Lessons Learned” a few weeks back. And among them was “Do not engage”. Don’t fight with a co-parent and don’t sweat every disagreement and think of the child and others close to you that are affected when you fail to follow that prime directive.
Today, I was denied time with my son, after he had been with his mother all weekend. He didn’t go to school — where I could have picked him up early from his aftercare program and had some time this evening with him. instead, he was kept home with what was described as a cold, fever, and allergies. But because I had not seen him since last Friday morning, I asked to get him after I finished my last call for work for the day.
And, I was, perhaps, rightfully upset when I was told that — because one of us interpreted a clause one way and the other interpreted it differently — I was just going to have to wait because possession (of my son) was 9/10ths of the law.
So, I fought back. I tried reasoning and then tried other tactics. But where I failed was in being more concerned with winning than looking at the big picture. Doesn’t matter if I was right or wrong about the argument. The argument itself was dumb. And the goal was dumb. And I threw a big dumb tantrum when I realized I was not “winning”. I got righteously indignant and slammed a pan down on a stove and was an idiot.
The big picture is the rest of my life. My life with the woman I love and with my son when I can have him and with the family I want to build with this beautiful, caring, perfect-for-me woman. And I put all that aside because I wanted to be The Big Winner of the Stupid, Asinine, Late Exchange Kerfuffle of 2017!
I put someone in the crossfire by making her deal with something that was unnecessary and not listening to her advice. And she deserves better. So, I have to BE better. I have to think of her and my son when I engage in stupid fights over semantics in a parenting plan. And I need to just let it go sometimes. See the forest for the trees and realize that I need her more than I need victory.
She’s wise. She turned my words back towards me:
I have to decide if I love her more than I dislike (or want to win) against my ex.