Long frustrating debates, filled with silences and clicks as the communications system drops whole sections of our rebuttals into some sort of electronic limbo. In between the phone calls, imaginary conversations going sideways into meaningless bitterness. Emails sent, and days spent wondering how they were received, and then another debate about one little aspect of one email, and only occasionally a connection, an understanding.
We are both longing for him to be home.
At the same time, we are both fearing it. We will have to work this stuff out. Not that we have built up enormous differences, but just that we have each found a comfortable way of existing over these last few months, and the reunion will require some adjustment. I've found my own way of relating to the kids. Sometimes Garth gets glimpses of it during a phone call, and sometimes he has a good suggestion, but other times I just suggest that if he wants to do the parenting, he can hurry up and come home!
For now, I am preparing by gently shifting my focus. Perhaps out of self-preservation, I had turned my focus away from him for a while just so I wouldn't miss him so much. I know he did the same with me; he told me he tried not to think about home too much, or look at pictures of us, or that sort of thing.
Now it is time to start including him in our plans again. Not only that, but to make him a part of my thinking as I go through each day. Right away I notice that I have let myself get far behind on posting his weekly columns on his web site. At first I was waiting for the newspaper to publish them, but then a whole month went by when I could have posted some, but didn't get to it. My apologies to his Mom and others who have been waiting.
No time like the present. That's a phrase that has been making me a lot more effective lately (thanks mum!). Today I posted Garth's Week 6 article, from way back in November, which appeared in the Carlyle Observer at the end of December. I plan to keep them coming every couple of days until we are caught up.
2 months ago