It’s late Sunday evening after a busy weekend. Friday my son and his girlfriend came over for a night of pizza, libations and SingStar. Saturday the grandkids got dropped off and we headed out to a combination first communion/13th birthday party. Today, Sunday, was not a day of rest. The kids woke us early and as we spent time with them we also prepared for a traditional Sunday dinner with the family. Though my son and his girlfriend couldn’t make it over, my parents, my brother and my daughter’s family did. We grilled a meal of baby back ribs, Italian sausage, baked potatoes and zucchini & yellow squash. There was a big salad on the side with brownies and two flavors of mousse for desert (French vanilla and raspberry chocolate to be exact).
As we enjoyed each other’s company and the warm weather, I remembered that today, April 26th, is or was my ex-husband’s birthday. I have to use both verbs as we’re not sure if he is still alive. It’s been about nine years since either of my children has had contact with him.
The last time one of his brothers talked to him was about five years ago. Though we all agreed that if he got in touch with any of us we would not disclose the address or phone number of anyone else, he did tell my ex that he was a grandfather in hopes it might make a difference and he would turn his life around...it didn’t work. During that conversation it was revealed that my ex’s girlfriend was prostituting herself for their drug money.
At the time of our split, over nineteen years ago, he was making $125,000.00 a year salary as general manager of a car dealership, and that doesn’t include the perks. He was a high school drop out with enough ambition to climb the ladder and get himself to the top of his industry within ten years. A beautiful house with an acre and a half of property, an in ground pool, nice cars and two beautiful children. He had it all and his friends were jealous. Even though our marriage was not what either of us bargained for at the ripe young ages of 16 and 18, he still had it all…until the partying and drugs set in.
At the time of our split I didn’t wish him ill will; and I didn’t for years after that...or even now. As time went on and he spent less time with his children, I didn’t curse him out or bad mouth him to our kids. I was nice when I could be and civil when I wanted to be otherwise. I never wished that he was sick or injured or dead; but I did wish one thing. I wished that one day he would wake up, look in the mirror and be sorry for what he missed out on. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t mean what he missed out on not being with me; I mean what he missed out on with his children. He may have had days when this thought crossed his mind…in between wondering where his next high was coming from or where he’d sleep that night or how he’d fill his growling stomach...but then again, maybe not.
I remembered it was his birthday today, if he’s still around, did he?