Messy Mamahood

April 23, 2010

Until death do us part...

Do you remember taking your wedding vows? "For better for worse. For richer for poorer. In sickness and in health..." Well, when we divorce a spouse with whom we have children, we forget about those vows, except for one - "until death do us part." Yep, when kids are involved, we're in it until the end. (Single readers, this should make you think long and hard about the person you decide to marry.)

We may divorce one another, but we don't divorce our children. And, like it or not, they need both parents in their lives. It took me a while to understand that. I thought since my ex-husband was an alcoholic, a drug addict and a cheater that he wasn't worthy of having a say in our kids' lives. Thankfully, he's been clean and sober for several years now. But at the time of our divorce, I felt I was the only parent capable of raising Taege and Keile. And I fought for them, tooth and nail. I also believed I was pretty good at hiding my contempt for my ex, but I wasn't, and I know my children saw it.

What I've come to realize though is that even though we may not see eye-to-eye on some parenting issues, my ex is a good dad and he loves our children as much as I do. And it's nice to be able to work together parenting our children, to be able to talk about decisions that need to be made without any underlying tension, to attend their events together, to share memories and funny stories of them and to ponder their future.

Let's face it, depending on the ages of our children, we're going to be with our exes through soccer games, parent/teacher conferences, recitals, first cars, first dates, proms, graduations, college decisions, weddings, the birth of our grandchildren, and the list goes on. Wouldn't it be much easier to face those monumental moments in harmony? Sure, we could hold grudges that go on for years. But who does that hurt in the long run? Only you...and the kids.

Choose to live in peace!

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