Despite the fact that my title is a little light hearted what occurred was not. All I can say is I am thankful that T was a little shit this morning and we were running behind schedule.
As we sat in the drive-thru at Tim’s my phone started to ring. At first I was confused and then realized it was my ringtone going off. Grabbed my phone saw it was from the school division and answered. I will admit to some confusion because it was not 9 yet….they should not have been calling me. Also it was coming from the school division rather than the school.
I answered. Yes I know that it is illegal but I was in a drive thru. With the phone to my ear listening. And my heart stopped.
We live in a safe city. Not that there is not crime there is but we are Canadian. We do not worry about bombs or school shootings. Our city still has a small town feel to it. I do believe our high school was shut down once last year due to a ‘gun’ being seen/talked about in school. Nothing more.
So when I answered the phone to an automated message that T’s school had received a bomb threat I listened. Bomb was to be detonated at noon. RCMP were on site. A search was on. I hung up and burst into tears.
Yes, T was sitting right next to me. I am sure he was delighted that the morning was going to be spent at home. Given that he had been begging to stay home with me. Today is my day off.
I live in a bubble. Well not a bubble, given that I am aware of world issues, I am not stupid enough to think that crime does not happen here, but we watch the news from the states and think, ‘not here, not at my child’s school.’ Well it happened at my child’s school and my heart stopped. I would have been freaking right out had I already dropped T off at school and received the message when I got home.
I received no less than 5 phone calls and 5 emails updating me on the situation. And they even numbered them. The school moved the kids to a safe location. The staff and bus drivers were willing to wait with the students no matter how long it took. By message 4 they indicated where the kids were and parents could come and pick them up. Children would have to be signed out.
A suspect had been identified. It turned out to be a student hoax. The thought had crossed my mind that maybe some kid had a test but didn’t want to take…..so they called in a bomb threat.
T did not go to school even after the all clear was sounded. He told me he was scared. How could they be sure it was a hoax? What if there were other people involved? He did not want to blow up. Was he playing on my emotions? I don’t know. But I do know that I was not going to stress him out by making him go to school.
I can not even begin to imagine what parents whose children are involved in school shootings go through. My heart stopped. T is my world. My sun. My moon. My stars. And this when he was sitting right next to me. Reality is beginning to rise it’s head, no longer is the city I live in safe.
I have been weepy today. I hate sometimes that my imagination is so good as it is……
I can imagine anything. In vivid detail. To my detriment….I can make myself cry with what I imagine. What if……
I am glad that it was determined to be a student hoax.
I am glad that I had T home with me.
I am scared of what will come.
This is only the beginning……
Picture via: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stealth_aircraft
As parents we are given responsibilities:
We need to guide our children.
We need to teach them.
We need to instill morals.
We need to nourish their imaginations
and in return
are given the greatest of gifts.
A child’s love is pure.
It knows no boundaries.
It comes in all colors of the rainbow
and when allowed to flourish
it is an unending love that
Yet there are those
women and men
who will take a child’s love
twist and betray it
by putting their needs
their desires first.
Such selfish behaviour
destroys the unconditional love
destroys the relationship
and ultimately will destroy the child’s belief in self worth.
Our children are our greatest treasures
we need to hold them tight
while they allow us
for though their love is always ours
their time will not be.
I am sitting here having my coffee this morning a little tired and cranky. I could easily pass it off onto the cats who were doing the chase around the house at 3:23 a.m. using myself as a part of their obstacle course but this is not the sole reason.
For those who don’t know the whole story let me give you a bit of history. It has been 2.5 years since the Ex and me split. He fought me tooth and nail that we would share custody of T. Sharing is different from joint custody. Shared is a straight 50/50 split. One week T is with me, one week with his dad. Not always perfect but it has worked.
This passed January, the Ex’s girlfriend began going to school during the day and had to work nights. As does he. So I agreed that T could come and spend the nights here while they were working. It was going to be for six months. She is done next month.
Beginning of April when I returned to work I explained to the Ex that he would need to stop here and pick T up on his way home from work Saturday a.m. as I began at 9. This is when I learned that for the previous month and a half, he has not been working Friday nights. Yet he not only did not tell me, he also did not pick T up until mid-Saturday afternoons. Well I guess you would think that shock would be my most prominent feeling. It wasn’t. I was more resigned.
T has been mentioning to me that his dad spends little time with him. Always in the shop working. Or on the weekends drinking. Hanging out with his friends. And T is suppose to stay until Monday mornings but has been coming home on Sunday for the last several weeks.
I received a text in the middle of the night. Well, 1:40 a.m. I woke up realizing that I had heard my phone go off. Before everyone is like wth is her phone on for I have two reasons. 1) T was at a sleepover at M’s. And despite her being a nurse and my inability to do anything were something to happen given that we live an hour apart, I leave my phone on just in case. 2) Mom. Again, I know that I can do nothing if something happens to her, but I don’t want to be waking up to a call from my bro about it.
I had been lead to believe that the Ex would not be home until today from his fishing weekend. That he works tonight so T would be staying with me. The working part is correct however he came home yesterday. The text was from his girlfriend. Or rather should I say ex-girlfriend. They had just broken up.
She was messaging me to ask that I keep T today until she was done moving out. That she did not want him to see that. I messaged her back and than shot a text to the Ex asking WTF? I have yet to hear from him. I don’t expect to because he is going to be hung over and dealing with a bitchy ex-wife is probably not at the top of his to do list.
We, she and I messaged for about an hour. His drinking is getting worse. He is not acting like himself. Refusing to change. Refusing responsibility except to himself. And it was never clearer to me that I had married a man so like my dad I am disgusted with myself.
Drink. Wreck lives. Pass out. Contrition. Rinse. And Repeat.
He is charming I will give him that. When he wants to be. But as a companion he sucks shit. She said to me last night that she hoped he would learn to love again. Now that could be a shot a me for destroying his ability but it wasn’t. The truth of the matter is that the Ex, he loves himself first and foremost. T, the ex-girlfriend, me we are/were pulled into his orbit. I have been able to pull myself out but T he is still there.
I am sad really. Sad because I believe that beneath the infantile man who puts his needs and wants before everyone else, is someone who could be a really great dad. Who could teach his son how to be a kind and decent man. Sad because I stand on the sidelines watching my child hurt and can only ease the pain so much. Sad because I am watching history repeat itself.
Benign neglect is more disheartening than straight up neglect.
There is always that hope that the other person with change. It is a futile wish.
**Photo is mine taken at Matlock Beach, Manitoba last summer**