Yeah. Ewww. It's happened. Big Daddy and Secretary have spawned. And no, Big Daddy, it wasn't the kids who spilled the beans. Please don't go off on them about this one.
Ever since Secretary oozed onto the scene, I knew it was only a matter of time before she'd convince Big Daddy to knock her up. When the topic comes up, and it often does when your ex marries someone younger, I usually just say no, no babies yet. And the conversation changes to something more exciting, like Costco or the weather.
I never gave it too much thought. Until today.
Honestly, I'm a little surprised by my lack of reaction. I imagined that it would feel almost like getting dumped again, or like finding out there was another woman hiding in the shadows. But it doesn't.
The only thing I felt was sad. And I've been trying to figure out exactly where that sad is coming from.
It's definitely not a "why oh why can't it be me" kind of sadness. Although I loved being pregnant and was a bit disappointed when Big Daddy convinced me to get my tubes tied back in the "Let's Fix This Marriage" phase, I came to terms with my child-bearing years being kaput a while ago. I have four healthy kids who are growing up to be wonderful people. I've had a good run.
And it's for sure not a jealousy-based sadness. I don't really give a shit what Big Daddy does with his life, and I certainly don't give a rip about Secretary and her bun-infested oven. Whatever they do is their business. Nasty, creepy business, but it's all theirs. I have bigger issues to contend with, like raising the four kids I mentioned a minute ago.
My sadness, I think, is for my kids. Out of the four of them, only William has experienced anything remotely resembling a normal father/child relationship. It's almost as if Big Daddy wrote off the other three and focused on the one who was still little. The one who was so young when the shit-storm happened that he doesn't even have memories of his parents being married.
They've already experienced Big Daddy pushing them aside for someone else, and now they get to go through it all over again. Only this time, it's not Daddy's new girlfriend. It's a baby.
Just the other day, Henry approached me after talking to his dad on the phone. "I don't think Dad likes me very much" he said. Have you any idea how heartbreaking it is to hear a 13 year old boy say that? I'm worried about how this is going to affect Henry. If he's already feeling alienated from his father, I can't imagine how a new baby will affect their relationship.
You want to know the funny thing about this? I actually WANT to be happy for Big Daddy. I want to be happy and excited for my kids. I really, truly do want that. But I can't feel anything other than sadness. I'm sad that Big Daddy doesn't see exactly how massively he's fucked everything up, from the time he first started messing around, to his "should I stay or should I go" period of time (good times, getting to tell the kids for a second time that daddy's leaving..) to how he treats his own flesh and blood like annoying relatives (stay in the basement when we have company!).
It's just sad.
But I did have a little laugh, when I thought about the shock that Secretary's about to get...remember, I've been through this with Big Daddy four times. I'll never forget how he pouted when he realized that babies need attention and that he was no longer the King Shit of the house. How he ranted and raved about the expense involved in baby-raising. How he dealt with crying babies by putting them in the baby swing for hours at a time or put them in the basement to "cry it out".
I wonder how she'll feel about the whole no child support thing when she looks into the little face of her infant for the very first time. Do you think she may finally understand my anger over Big Daddy's refusal to help support our kids? I mean, exactly how many shades of stupid do you have to be in order to have a kid with a man who doesn't support the four kids he already has???
I also remembered that Big Daddy and Secretary first met around the time William was born. It wasn't long after the birth of our fourth baby that he really started trolling around the office for some action. I wonder if she'll look back on that, and be able to see things from my perspective for a bit? What it must have felt like, to be a new mom and not know where your husband was at 2 a.m.?
Maybe I'm giving her too much credit...apparently empathy isn't one of her stronger traits. We'll see.
I wish them the best, really, I do. I'm not a complete ogre, a baby is a miracle and worthy of celebration no matter how murky of a gene pool it's from. I hope that everything goes smoothly and they are blessed with a child just as healthy and beautiful as my own. Although a little bit of colic wouldn't be so bad (yeah, the fact that I'm going to hell was determined before I hit the age of 20...I'll save you a seat).
Henry and I were talking about it tonight, and he said, "And it's a boy. Which means Dad will get to do all the hockey stuff with it right from the start." This is the same Henry who asked his dad if he could learn how to play hockey a couple of years ago. Big Daddy's response? "You're too old." Even the most well-adjusted kid would have some issues with a new half-sibling, a kid who has experience being rejected and ignored by his Dad is most certainly going to struggle with it, big time.
I'm going to have to watch the kids, look for signs that they're having a hard time. I will be nothing but positive if they want to talk about it, nothing but supportive if they don't. It's going to be hard to see the person who refuses to pay child support buying all sorts of new baby gear, to see a bedroom that was theirs be changed into a nursery, to see the woman who has treated them with nothing but disdain and annoyance for the past few years get pampered and spoiled by their dad.
This is uncharted territory, for everyone involved. Keep your fingers crossed for all of us.
On a lighter note, I just have to add that my date with John McCain was wonderful. Wonderful food, wonderful wine, wonderful conversation.
And wonderful other stuff, too. More details soon.