My wife and I swap kids every week. This last time I got the short end of the stick because of my my son’s birthday… She wanted to be with him as well, and asked if I would be willing to give up some time so she could… and I said sure.
I’ve been reading other blogs and listening to some podcasts and I see a lot of similar advice for people in my position… the main one being “Be Calm, Be Strong, Be Gentle.” The reason I bring this up is I have been intentionally trying to be more amenable to her requests without rolling over or allowing her to bend me over. Since I’ve been doing this, our conversations, either through text or in person, have been more pleasant. By no means is it at a level of even hinting that she is open to the thought of maybe trying to reconcile… but our interactions have been pleasant, which is better than the vitriol she had been spewing towards me earlier this year.
Yesterday, when she came by my place to get the boys, she and I had a few minutes to chat. We were talking about my oldest son’s tutor… and how this woman can talk… like incessantly… and doesn’t know how to read body language clues that indicate the conversation needs to come to an end because I need to get going! We both shared our experiences and had a good laugh. The same thing happened two weeks ago when I dropped the boys off to her… and I really didn’t think anything of it except that it was nice to laugh with her again. And yesterday it happened again. Again… I’m not thinking were are ready to reconcile… but it gives me hope that we may be moving in the right direction.
Another thing that caught me by surprise was that she noticed a small chain I recently started wearing. It was under my shirt, but I guess it showed a little in the back. It caught me by surprise, and I found it interesting that she asked about it, wondering if it was my dad’s. I just said it was a chain, and I liked how it looked.
I know… this all means nothing. I know this. But it gives me hope. I always look at the little meaningless things she does… and wonder why she does it. Is she beginning to vacillate? Is she beginning to remember the good times we had together rather than focus on all of the negative? Is she possibly seeing me in a new light?
Only time will tell. Only she really knows whats going on. She still is at arms length… we don’t even hug anymore when we swap kids… though it seems like if I tried she would. But at least our interactions have been, and hopefully will continue to be, positive.
My hope is that if we can stay this course, she may begin to open her heart to me again… to remember how much we loved each other… to see how much I still love her… and to realize that what we had/have is stronger than we both realized and that our family and marriage is worth the work.
Sometimes I think hopeful and hopeless are really the same word… just spelled differently.