If you ask what I am proudest of in my advancing years – besides my children, books and students, my friends and garden – I would perhaps answer, “My divorce.”
Not the original divorce, which was the most excruciating event of my life by far. I still feel guilt and grief that my kids grew up in such chaos. But even at the worst times, my ex and I continued to parent together; we went to school meetings side by side even when we were fighting each other in court. When things got resolved, we began to email each other and talk about what was going on at each end. Frustrations didn’t stop. I still disagreed with a lot, and I’m sure he did too. But we worked together, and we never spoke ill of the other to the kids.
Now, almost 25 years after our separation, here he is staying in my basement suite; we breakfast together, and then either the kids come over here or we go over there. We spent yesterday, a freezing rainy day, with our daughter and her son. They’re all with Sam on the other side of town now, after Anna, Eli, Ed and I spent the morning wandering around downtown – the Railway Museum, who knew? Tonight we’ll have supper together, and then the boys will play pool, and the girls and Eli are going to a Blue Rodeo concert at the Molson Amphitheatre, the $20 tickets on the far edge. What fun. Tomorrow, more of the same. Family time.
My ex-husband is a good man, he just was not the right husband for me – if there is such a person, which it looks highly doubtful after most of my life lived in single bliss. He is now remarried with a 4-year old. He’s a wonderful grandfather, and to me, he’s a cherished old friend. We talk about all the people we know, our parents and siblings – all that would have been lost if we’d lost each other. So I am proud of that.
What grandpas are good for – shoulders!
An honorary grandpa visited too – Wayson.
Three generations of the same nose. Looking at a crane. Amazing.
PS. Just got this from a friend – proud of this too: