Life changes so quickly these days. This week, J had his custody hearing. What happened was just downright unbelievable. The Ex did not show. How can you not show to the hearing that decides the fate of your children???? But, it was in J's favor anyway. I guess she realized that she didn't have to show since she wasn't going to win anyway. I don't know. What I do know, is that as of Monday, our lives will change forever. J gets his kids. We are sure of that, based on the judge's comments. The hearing was rescheduled to Monday, only because an important mediation report was missing. So that has to be redone Monday morning. Then, Monday afternoon, the hearing will take place a second time.
J and I went to dinner last night to discuss the change and next steps. For the kids, it will be a hard adjustment. After hearing horrible things about their dad for so long, it will take some critical intervention to help them to reconcile their feelings. J mentioned the judge wants to mandate counseling. He is happy with that, because he has tried to have them in therapy before, but the ex thwarted him often. The kids will need time to adjust, and so will J. For that reason, as of Monday, I step into the shadows for a little while.
I assured him that I love him and want what's best for the kids. I am quite reasonable about this in my head. He and the kids will need to find a rhythm again, a way to live and work together on their relationships. What J doesn't need (and the kids definitely don't need) is an outside party interfering or encroaching on their precious time together. I made sure that J knew that I fully expect to be on the sidelines during this time. I can handle it. I know how I would feel if it were me trying to re-establish my ties to my son. I don't mind being regulated to 3rd string for the sake of the kids. I'll take my every-other weekend "J Time" and be happy about it.
But not really.
I am sad. I totally got used to having him around. It's going to be a hard adjustment for me. My head knows it is the right thing to do, and my heart sort of knows it, too. Mostly, I am unsure of the future and that is always so unsettling for me. I am you typical type-A personality. Must have a plan. Must be in charge. Must know what's coming.
And I don't.
What if it takes YEARS to "fix" the kids? We could be in this holding pattern indefinitely.
What if J finds that he is torn between the kids and me? I would HATE to be a burden or a worry to him. Especially now. He doesn't need that.
What if he stops loving me? Ok, I don't believe that will happen, but it is a concern. When we are no longer "in the bubble" (using his words) and are facing these tough life issues, it will not be so easy or comfortable. Will he find that I was merely a passing fascination?
Wow, didn't expect that to come out, to be honest.
For the past few months, J and I have been building a foundation for our relationship. I knew the possibility was there that he would get his kids and I never pretended that he would be "all mine" at any time. We talked about blending our families and settling into a place together. We talked about what we would do for childcare, schooling, etc. We day dreamed about putting an addition on to the house and making room for everyone in my little house. We discussed all this and more.
Only now that it is a reality do I realize that it's going to take more time than I had previously thought. And it's going to be a lot of work. And, I will not expose N to the turmoil of the time period it takes for J and his kids to reconnect. He is too young and won't understand. J and I talked about this, too, but we are clear that we will stay together through it all. I have firmly believed from the beginning of our relationship that the kids would be with him and that we would forge a life together as a new family. N believes it, too. He keeps asking me to marry J so he can have a brother and sister. As the saying goes, "This too shall pass." All of the unknown and scary is only temporary in the grand scheme of things. It will work out.
Life changes so fast. Who knows? I can be a worry wart sometimes. I know that whatever happens, the best in life is still to come.