Daphne


My pretty foot.

My pretty foot.

All the way around to my ankle.

All the way around to my ankle.

These were done by Daphne.

Yep. They were among her first attempts at even doing any sort of henna tattooing.

This all came about because of my sweet sister.

At the beginning of our Sisters Retreat Weekend, we are asked to stand up and announce to the Circle who we are, and what we bring to the community. Some women respond with, I’m a massage therapist. Others say, I’m really good at listening. I spoke of my own truths and talents. Daphne’s response was: I’m Daphne, and I’m not good at anything. I don’t have any talents.
😦

My sisters strove to change her mind on that. And Saturday morning one sister asked Daphne to put a mandala on her belly. She, like many of us, know about Daphne’s talent for free-handed drawings of mandalas. She brought some henna and told Daphne to decorate. So she did. After all, even Daphne knows not to speak back to one of her aunts. LoL

Beautiful henna - made even more so by the little boy inside.

Beautiful henna – made even more so by the little boy inside.

I am so grateful to her, and the others, who encouraged my child. To the ones who complimented her talents. To her for decorating my own foot and ankle. I feel so ubber pretty with my decorations. The only direction I gave her was to start at my big toe, and end around my ankle area. I think that she did an amazing job. I am looking forward to more of her talents being displayed upon my body.

At the end of the weekend, we are asked to give our thoughts on our experiences. Daphne said, “I’m grateful that I now know what my talent is.”

((*BIG MOMMA SIGH*))

I really am not sure how to post this. I mean, my head understands that they are going to keep growing up. That really is the purpose of it all, right? Yet, my heart keeps wanting to make them slow-the-fuck-down, on this whole ‘growing up’ thing.
Today they went to the beach.
By.
Themselves!

(*shock*)
((*sob*))
(((*sigh*)))

They knew that I had a client today in Cocoa Beach. They wanted to go to the beach. They wanted me to just give them a lift there and then go assist my client. They acted as if this were the most normal thing in the world to do.

((((***sighhhhhhh***)))))

My Baby Girls.... all growing up and shit.

My Baby Girls…. all growing up and shit.

My daughters have been like having twins, in more days than not.   Even when they were little, everything we did, we did in pairs.  Change 1 diaper – change them both.  Do one girl’s hair – then do the other.  I taught Daphne, right along side of Rebecca, when doing numbers, shapes, letters, colors, and so forth.  They learned to ride a bike on the same day.  They spoke within days of each other.  So many times it was like Rebecca was waiting for Daphne to ‘catch up’ – before she would do anything.

Same thing for the prom.  This was their first year going.  Each of them…. Together.

My beautiful daughters.

My beautiful daughters.

You gotta get down... you'll be taller than me in those heels!

You gotta get down… you’ll be taller than me in those heels!

Daphne - Classic elegance

Daphne – Classic elegance

Rebecca - Princess

Rebecca – Princess

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So after talking to J, the girls’ therapist, I’m going to give Daphne what she wants. I’m going to let her move-in with her dad.

After all, I will be out of town this weekend, till Tuesday. I can add on tonight, and make it nearly a week long thing for them all.

Oh yes. Them all!

A few things about this that came up in talking with J.

1) Baggage goes with you.
Is that Daphne (and her dad) have got to learn that her baggage is going to follow her, wherever she goes. Life doesn’t get easier just because you move away from home. You still have to find ways to cope with your life. You still have to learn how to express your emotions. You still have to do your homework. No matter where you live.

Sure its going to be easier when there is nobody around to hold you accountable, right up front. Yet, it will catch up to you all the same. Usually though by not dealing with it, in the beginning, you end up having to deal with a much worse situation. Call it Karmic Interest.

2) Your siblings get to move out too.
Oh yes. Rebecca, Bronwyn, and Russell all get to come along. Its not fair to them, if Daphne gets to go live a live of luxury over at Dad’s place, and they still have to eat green beans for dinner. I’m not going to sit here and defend the idea that somehow she gets to have special privileges of no Study Hall, no curfew, fast-food take-out, no laundry duty, no chores, and no accountability for where you’re at, or who you’re with; if the others don’t.

The EX complained that he doesn’t get to spend time enough with the kids, well here you go. Which is a complete falsehood, because it is rare, to non-existent that I ever deny him, or them, time together. He even admitted this to me during our “conversation” this morning. AND again, when I brought it up, while we were having an additional “conversation” about this Trial Week.
Me: At any point do I force the current child-time-share agreement?
Ex: No.
Me: Have I ever told you that you were late in bringing the kids home on a Sunday?
Ex: No.
Me: Have I ever told you, No you can’t have the kids, and take to the beach; because that is on a weekday?
Ex: No.

3) Living at Dad’s means Living AT Dad’s.
No coming home 9 times in a day because you forgot something. No coming back to the house to sleep on school nights. Yes, Rebecca and Daphne do this. They pick and choose where / when they will sleep at home, vs sleeping at Dad’s. They don’t like having to walk the extra 7 blocks to the school bus in the mornings. But sleeping here at home, when I’m not here; is basically not living with either parent. Its living alone. They don’t get to do that during this Trial Week.

Living there means following all of Dad’s rules. If that means going to bed at midnight, or sleeping on the floor, or having to throw out the trash. So be it. I will not be driving by your Dad’s with fast food, because you didn’t like what he was serving. Oh, he does this to me, all the time. He will simply come by the house with a bag from Taco Bell, as I’m serving dinner.

So this will be a very interesting 6 nights. I know, I know, I know – a week is 7. Be grateful for the 6 days, I’m not sure I can handle more than that. I’m trying.

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So for the last few weeks the Ex and I have been having productive, even kind, conversations with one another. Speaking on the phone mainly, and once even in public. At one point he asked about my friend, whose health isn’t the best right now. I asked about Rhonda, and her health. I even went so far as to offer to skip one of Russell’s games so that Rhonda could come and see him play baseball. Knowing that Rhonda wouldn’t come and see him play, if I was there. I really thought that perhaps we had turned a corner and that this relationship with Barry could be a good one.

I should have been more cautious. I should have been more aware of what I was leading myself into.

This morning Barry informs me that as soon as he can, he’s going to take me back to court and sue for the custody of the kids. He’s going to take them away from me, because I’m not letting Daphne come and live with him.

This lead to an arguement.

He agreed with me, when I said, “This is why I shouldn’t be nice to you. This is what it gets me.”
He said, “I was being nice to you too. But you say one thing to me, then write crappy stuff about me on that Blog of yours.”

I do, but not always. I have on occasion written nice things about him, and how I am happy to see us working together. He said that I never write anything nice. I asked him if he had read it. HE said, “No. But I hear about it.”
Me: “Then you shouldn’t listen to rumor. You should go and get the facts for yourself, instead of relying on someone else’s lies.”
He didn’t have anything to say for that.

Ulitmately this was about Daphne.

I can see it for what it is now. I can see his worry about her. I have the same worries. He can’t control her cutting, or solve her depression, by moving her out of the enviroment that gives her stability and forces her to heal. Does he really think that allowing her to just “Up and Move to Dad’s” is going to solve this?

I can see her not liking how I hold her accountable for her actions. Her words. I can see her wanting to have something “easier”, and that she thinks she will get that from Barry. He claims that he can hold her accountable. That he can monitor. Be on top of her. Make her have study hall. Make her tell him, wherever she is. Make her give up her phone, and allow him to read what is on there. Yet, he hasn’t done any of these things in the last 2 years. Not on a consistant basis. Not every day.

Because it is hard. It takes a lot of work. It takes a lot of effort. He did not show that effort when he lived at home. He has not shown that effort since the divorce. Buying the kids whatever they want, is not being a parent. Feeding them junk food, because they don’t want to eat what you cooked, is not being a parent. Being a parent means making some choices for your kids, that they are not going to like; but are what they need to do. Even if its hard.

I spoke about some of the things like this. He just sat there. He just sat there and stared at me like I grew 3 heads or something. Then he started in on how he was going to take me to court if I didn’t let Daphne move in with him.

I know in my heart that if I let Daphne move in with Barry – she won’t be around this time next year.

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