I Got Boy Problems That‚Äôs The Human In Me / Don’t Text Me, Tell It Straight To My Face

Yesterday out of the blue E sent a text to see how the kids are and to ask me to say hi to them. They haven’t really talked much in months, and the last time they saw him was at Christmas.

By now, I thought I was over E. and as far as our relationship goes, I am. But when I got that text, I was bothered. And I was even more annoyed at myself by the fact that I was bothered by him. Maybe it was the wording of his text, and maybe it was just my mood even before I received it, but it irked me. Basically My reply was a curt, the kids are good.

Because they are always good. I make sure of that. Because I’m here every day raising them. I don’t check in every 6 months to see how they are. I’m their mother 24/7/365. And so I was frustrated. But in the sake of good parenting, I did pass the message along to the kids and asked if they’d like to either call or message back. Little E opted for the text, and wrote out a little message about what he’s been up to lately and hit send. Then Z dictated to Little E a note for him to type. And that’s when my annoyance built up enough for me to vent here.

Her note was as innocent as any 5 year old who’s going about messaging their father could be. Hi Daddy. I love you. Etc…

I could’ve stabbed E with all the anger I felt in that moment. Here I’ve been, for the last 5 and a half years, taking care of these kids without him, and in one text, he swoops in and receives the same type of gratitude I get on a daily basis. No I’m not frustrated at Z, in all her innocence she’s just acting out how she’s seen other kids be with their dads. And she assumes you say I love you. And that’s not wrong, but in those circumstances there’s years of trust built up. There’s time put in. There’s sleepless nights attached. There’s financial stress involved. There’s fear of loss attached. All the aspects to create what I think deserves at least the start of love.

But she gives it with wreak less abandonment to a man who doesn’t understand the pain he’s caused.

I’m not upset at Z. On one hand I think it’s brave of Z to support E with love that cannot be returned and want to let her make her own choices. But on the other hand I want to caution her on attempting to set sail on a sinking ship. I don’t want to set her on a path where she feels her love is unreturned and therefore somehow not good enough.

For now though, I’m just going to take a day of two to cool off my irrational anger towards E for receiving what in my opinion is undeserving love and I’ll come back to this at a later time.

– Lizzo / Truth Hurts –

I Wish I Could Be Every Little Thing You Wanted All The Time

Last night Z nearly broke my heart.

I was washing her hair, which could be considered a full time job, although we do it on average once a week if I’ve had enough coffee and sleep, when she made the comment that she doesn’t like her hair and wished it was like all her friends hair, which is in her words ‘smooth’.

Z has the most fantastic Afro, which I’ll admit at first I didn’t at first know the first thing about dealing with for obvious reasons, the main being I never had hair like that so why bother learning right? But over the years as her hair grew I realized it was getting more curly and thick and I would need more insight on how to care for her crowning glory to do it full justice, I started researching what the better quality products would be to use. I learned all about a wash n go and wet plopping and deep conditioning which to be honest were all very helpful for my hair as well since I also have curly hair, although not to the extent of Z’s 3c/4a curls. I learned not to use drug store brands that contain sulphates and other harmful chemicals that will further dry her hair out. I learned how to trim her hair myself to maintain it and get rid of dry, split ends on my own without spending a fortune on a hairdresser. I will admit though that I still cannot plait her hair, but I have learned twist outs and how to lay her edges so I’ll just take that as a win for now. One step at a time. ūü§∑ūüŹĽ‚Äć‚ôÄÔłŹ

But when she was upset last night because her hair wasn’t ‘smooth’ like all her friends at school my heart fell into my gut. I can only be so much of a roll model for her in this area. I wear my hair as big, full and curly as possible, because I honestly feel the bigger the better, and I truly think natural hair is better. I’ve straightened my hair maybe once a year since finding out all this information about hair for Z. Little E wears his hair pretty close cut because he just has no interest in keeping a style and prefers it practically shaved, and even when he does grow it out, it’s not as curly as Z’s, it’s more of a thick bigger curl. Her dad maintains a bald head although they don’t see him often (as my regular readers know 3 visits when we went back at Christmas and before that it was February last year). So I guess my point with all these “examples ” is that she has no natural hair role models as far as her hair texture. I’ve shown her on places like instagram woman with beautiful hair like hers and how they wear it even bigger than hers. For reference, her fro averages between 6-10 inches but I don’t fluff it out on the bigger side often. She prefers to style it pushed back with a headband or with a few clips or two pigtail afropuffs. Which is for the best because those are the only ones I can pull off half decently.

Anyways this is a very roundabout way of saying I hurt for her. I want her to be proud of every part of her, but this is a way I can’t directly be a role model for her. Yes, I can wear my hair naturally and I do, but her hair is distinctively different, not only from mine, but from the streets of Kelowna and even where we were before and heck even in a Kenya because of the mix, and others notice. I think it’s fantastic and beautiful and many others do as well. We constantly receive compliments while out about how nice her hair is of which I reminded her last night. I told her that her hair is original and beautiful and she should never want to change who or how she is. I was detangling it and showed her how long it was while wet and stretched out and she was so impressed, since it reaches to her elbows. So after the bath, I did one long braid for her down her back and she was much happier and kept mentioning how long and smooth it looked. Albeit it only lasted about 15 minutes until it was completely dry and shrunk up to her neck but it made her happy in that moment.

I’m just wondering how to move forward from here. I’m WELL aware that my kids should have strong black role models in their life, but if there aren’t any around… I can’t just produce them out of thin air.

My in laws are not an option, her dad is out of the question. The black community in Kelowna is to be honest practically nonexistent (trust me, I’ve looked). But I know that it will be something they need to become the fullest version of themselves they can be.

I guess that’s the most frustrating aspect of this experience. Knowing I can be the best mom I can possibly be. I can make all the healthy lunches and arrange all the play dates and study up on all the hair care and do all the sex talks, to name a few examples, but facts are facts, and facts in my situation is that my kids are half black, there’s no denying that, and I would never want to. And that culture is not something I can provide them, and they desperately need it.

It makes me feel so inadequate.

Knowing no matter what, I’ll never be enough. And I can’t do it on my own.

And what’s worse it that the right people are not offering to help.

***update***

Just stopped at Walmart and saw this ironic and timely display showing Robert Munschs books on display

All had been picked through except the braids book (which Z owns). It’s a book about a girl with hair like Z’s and how she doesn’t like to have it braided since it takes a while and hurts. Etc. But anyways it’s literally just shows how no one in Kelowna has that culture in their life nor is trying to pass it on to future generations here and I’m on my own with my kids. ūüėĎ

*Z with morning bed head for reference*


-Dishwalla / Every Little Thing –

Why Do I Give Valuable Time To People Who Don’t Care If I Live Or Die / In My Life Why Do I Smile At People Who I’d Much Rather Kick In The Eye?

Frustrated. I guess that would be the only way to suitably and simply describe how I’m feeling now.

I’m stuck when it comes to my divorce. I feel any move I attempt to make will only be detrimental to my case and I hate that feeling.

Last you heard, I had contacted my lawyer and he sent an email saying something along the lines of us being very close to completion, but I just had to update my Legal Aid file. But when I contacted Legal Aid, they informed my that there was in fact nothing wrong with my file, but while they had me on the phone, they decided to do an update on my file.

I knew that would only turn out bad for myself since I know I make more than the limit now allowed for coverage by them. Turns out I was right. The lady on the phone said they would contact my lawyer, informing him of the situation. If the case was near completion (which it technically was, as mentioned by my lawyer, but knowing E it could still take years) then they would allow him to finish it off under my files current ticket with the subsidized coverage. If my lawyer felt it still had a lot longer to go, then he would have to wrap up whatever had been done thus far, and I could choose to either proceed with him, at full cost, or find a new lawyer, again paying full price.

Fast forward to today… and I still haven’t heard from ANYONE. So I feel like if I make a move and reach out to anyone, it might shine light on circumstances that might be better left hidden ie how much I make. Maybe my lawyer is wrapping things up and we are almost done like his previous email said, although that was like Christmas time-ish if I’m not mistaken so I’m doubtful that’s the case.

Agh, I just hate my divorce being basically controlled by others who realllllly don’t give a fuck. No-one cares that I’ve been dealing with this shit for FOUR GOD DAMN MOTHER FUCKEN DRAWN OUT MESSED UP ANNOYING AS ALL HELL YEARS.¬†

Four years. I could’ve gotten a University degree. Shit I could’ve been over halfway to becoming my own Lawyer at this point. At least then I would’ve known that without a doubt my legal counsel had my best interests in mind at all times. But nope. I’m sitting here feeling like my hands are tied. My lawyer doesn’t care, and E is just playing his continuous games.

If I had wanted to remain married for 8.5 years, I would’ve just stayed with E in Kenya.

I don’t.

I didn’t

I want to be divorced from that man.

Now.

And forever.

I’m not waiting for death to part us.


-The Smiths/Heaven Knows I’m Miserable Now-

I Was Wondering Maybe Could I Make You My Baby If We Do The Unthinkable Would It Make Us Look Crazy If You Ask Me I’m Ready

Oooooooh man. So it’s a holiday in my city today. Which in and of itself is good. Also happening today? Another house showing. Also a good thing right? Until I realized I had to be outta the house between 6:30-7:30 at night.

Seriously anytime my routine gets disturbed I’m flexible, yes. But not exactly happy lol. Especially when I arrived at the indoor playground to occupy my kids for a couple of hours and it’s PACKED in here because of the holiday.

There are so many things frustrating about it, but off the top of my head is how grammatically incorrect people are speaking. I’ll get to the point if my post in a minute but I can’t concentrate because all I can hear are all the parents around me, screaming at their children in sentences that would have any grade school teacher cringing. And it’s like no wonder kids nowadays barely speak proper English… they just repeat exactly what they’ve been taught, or not been taught in this case. It’s times like this I’m actually thankful my mom corrected every little error I made while speaking. It was theeeee most annoying thing at the time, but its made me thankful in times like now. Trust me. I’m well aware I’m far from speaking/writing perfectly, but I’m pretty sure I’m leaps and bounds above the majority of the people in here by the sounds of it.

Anyhoo. The reason I started this whole post today, was because as I was tidying up my house for the showing, a thought crossed my mind. As it has each time I’ve had other people in my house who don’t know me.

All these people will see, are the “artifacts” that represent our life now. And that’s it. They will see photos of my mixed race kids, which I have tastefully displayed around my house. They will also see evidence of only one parent. A mom. There is no trace of a man in my house at all. No shoes in the closet or coats in the door. No sports memorabilia. Not even a second adult toothbrush in the bathroom.

All that they’ll see are the items that belong to my kids, and I. No father. Which unfortunately because of so many stigmas, worries me that it will lead to one and only one impression in their minds, whether intentional or not. And that is, that this is the house of yet another single mom. Who probably got pregnant by some short-lived relationship where the dad didn’t want anything to do with the kid, or just pays his dues and moved on. Maybe takes the kids on weekends, but obviously by the lack of an imprint he has in their life, hasn’t stuck around.

And that bothers me.

Not because that’s not our story.

Not because that story does belong to so many others.

Not because I don’t wanna be judged as some gold digging hussy.

Not because I care how others judge me.

But because of the fact that I MYSELF THOUGHT IT. And if I thought it, who’s to say a stranger walking through my house won’t. Even just in passing. And even that itself shows what my kids will be subjected to throughout their life.

Because of my life decisions, my children will be lumped in with all the other kids in similar situations and judged the same, no matter if their history is different or not.

Society doesn’t give two shits about what happened between their dad and I, or how hard I tried even though I knew it wasn’t worth it to make my marriage work, and should’ve given up long before I did. They just see the results. The here and now. The leftovers. Which is another single mom with two kids whose black dad is not around.

And I hate it.

No one ever wants to be a part of a statistic, it’s never planned this way, but it’s even more depressing when it’s not one you believe in. I think black men have too many labels put on them in error in the first place. And I hate that my life contributes to that. Did my marriage fail? Yes. But does that mean every/any relationship with a black man will be unsuccessful? Absolutely not.

I still wholeheartedly trust them on the whole and have seen first hand MANY successful, thriving, long-term couples in mixed race, relationships, as well as white couples, black couples, and everything in between. People aren’t perfect. Relationships work because PEOPLE make them work.

No, we are not perfect. Yes, it can be more difficult to be in a relationship with someone from a different background than you, but I think that is exactly for the reasons I just mentioned above.

Stigma.

Society has grown to expect ‘certain things’ from ‘certain people’. Why? For what? Are we not all humans? Who made these decisions that certain races had to behave certain ways? And why?

I think love should just be love. And on the same hand, divorce should just be divorce. My marriage did not fall apart because of race. In fact that played no part in my decision, and never would (not that I hope to ever make a decision on divorce again). It was based on everything else that took place within the marriage because of us as people and our individual behaviors.

Therefore, in my ever so humble opinion, people, including myself, should just learn to take their opinions and shove ’em where the sun don’t shine.

Because let’s be honest. Those opinions are probably based on a stigma that should be eradicated anyway.

Also, wish me luck on the showing. They are repeat viewers so that’s a good sign ūü§ěūüŹľ.


-Alicia Keys/Unthinkable-

Wake Me Up When It’s All Over. When I’m Wiser And I’m Older.¬†

As we were preparing to get married, E shared a “tradition” from back home that he wanted us to partake in. This might be difficult to explain as it’s regarding names and I try to avoid using real name here for anonymity sake, as well as the fact that the “tradition” turned out to be 100% fake, and we did something that I’m, to this day, trying to remedy because E felt like making up some random story just for shits and giggles.

Anyways the tradition he told me went something like this… and keep in mind at this point, I’d never yet been to Kenya, and I had no reason to doubt anything E was saying, because quite frankly I never thought anyone would be capable of making up stuff as extreme as this just… well just because I guess, normal people I’d met up until that point never lied like E did. I’ll never actually know why he did it.

So, he told me that when a man gets married, at least in his tribe, it was custom for him to drop his last/surname and have his middle name became his new last name. So from that point on, he’d only be known by his first and middle name=his new last name.

So if I was dating a Billy Frank Smith, when we got married he would still be known as Billy, but our new last/surname would be Frank, and Smith would be out of the picture making my new husband only Billy Frank, and me C Frank. He said then as a man, you would be starting your own family and be more removed from your Dads ‘tribe’. Also, to make it even more complex (as everything with E was), the middle names when choosing a baby’s name were to be chosen from a limited group of ‘family’ names. So that the man could still be recognized as part of this certain tribe. He said they do it this way so that as a man gets married it is his way of starting his own tribe/family.

I hope I’m explaining it well, because trust me it was confusing as heck to me. Probably because it’s not a tradition that his tribe had been following for centuries or has ever done. It was something E made up in his mind. But I trusted him, because this was the man I was going to marry so I figured he was telling the truth, and I had no reason not to believe in him. Plus it was so absurd, how could it not be true, right?

Therefore at our wedding we had to make it known during a speech to explain how we would be known as Mr and Mrs M. instead of the expected original Mr. and Mrs. S that everyone was expecting, being that it was the name everyone had known E by. Since E was still dealing with immigration issues though and both of our names were on so many of those documents at that time as our maiden names, neither of us changed our names at that point, which was for the best. The person it has affected most though, is Little E.

When I became pregnant with him, more about this whole name thing was ‘explained’ to me by E. About how the middle names should be chosen from selected tribe names etc. At this time, our plan was that we would be moving to Kenya and living there on a more permanent basis, and I really wanted my kids to fit in as much as possible and was counting on E’s advice to make that happen. So E supplied me with a list of about 5-7 male names from his family tree that we had to choose from for Little E’s middle name, that, according to E would one day be his last name once he married. We settled on a name that sounded good when said start to finish “Little E, then the chosen middle name (also started with M) then the last name M’ that we would all have one day once we finished our paperwork. So it was decided. I thought.

Until literally 5-10 minutes after I had given birth to Little E and I was drugged up and totally out of it and E decides to ask if we can change everything we had previously decided on.

Instead of the original E.M.M, for the newly born baby boy, he wanted Little E to be named E.S.M. So that little E’s middle name would be E’s current last name starting with S. So that when Little E gets married and drops the last name of M, he will have E’s family name of S remaining. Confused? I was too. ¬†I said yes, because I just didn’t care at the time, I was just glad my baby was healthy and I had successfully brought forth life. Plus I had JUST given birth, and was in no position to argue.

So Little E now had the initials E. S. M. Not to bad eh? Well, it was fine, until we flew with our little boy to Kenya, where lo and behold, his family and pretty much everyone else in the entire country told me that E was full of crap. They’d never heard of that tradition before. I was mad. Now E has gone and messed with our kids names! And for what???

I confronted him about it and all he could say was that he must’ve been mistaken, and that oh ok, we’ll keep the original S last name like usual. I couldn’t believe it. Did he not realize that now Little E has the S middle name and now E says it should be his last name too!?!? Like are you kidding me? Your want our son to be called Little E then Smith Smith for example? No thanks.

So I bring it up today because Little E has finally chosen a new middle name. He understands that his middle name of S will now be his last name so he can match Z and Dad and Mom and all share the same last/surname and since I am too stubborn and did not want Little E to just have his middle name and last name switch place, mainly because I don’t want E to have that small pleasure of having his family name remain after all the chaos his lies caused. So we’ve been taking our time deciding on a brand new middle one. And Little E choose it today.

We’ve read through many names and meanings and Little E choose the name Theo. It means divine gift and he loves it and although there are others that I might prefer, I don’t mind giving him the lead on this choice as I can see the confidence it gives him. Plus it’s a step up from last summer when he wanted to change it to Tyrannosaurus. Plus if it was that awful I would always veto it. But I think he choose well and I’ll be working on the legal process to change it throughout the coming weeks. Oh and yes, it’s already been documented in the divorce that I can change his name without consent from E, because of the exact reasoning above. So we’re in the clear. Although I did inform E of Little E’s choice and he is fine with it.

So, I guess all I can say is I’m not a fan of fake tradition.


-Avicii/Wake Me Up-

Mama She Has Taught Me Well Told Me When I Was Young Son Your Life’s An Open Book Don’t Close It ‘Fore It’s Done

So I took the kids to the park yesterday and as Z went off on the slide, Little E and I had our “conversation”

The whole “Why doesn’t Dad live with us?” question that he had asked me earlier in the day… I thought I had mentally prepped my answer, thought it through, and I thought I was ready to handle it in a way a 6-year-old would understand, without many follow-up questions.

I thought wrong.

We sat on a park bench and I told him that dad used to live with us and asked him if he remembers living in Kenya with him. He said oh yeah. I went on explaining that something happened between mom and dad, where dads imagination/brain made him think he was in danger a lot and at that time, his mind told him that mom was a bad person, so he hurt mom. So I made the choice that even though at the time I loved dad, I had to make sure you and Z, plus myself, were going to be ok. Because I didn’t know if dads mind was going to think up any other silly things that might hurt anyone else. So I took you, and Z and we moved out of the house where dad was, and back to Canada to live with Nanna and Nonno.

I wanted to make sure everyone was safe. And now, like I’ve told you before, dad takes medicine to help his voices go away, so he’s not scared anymore. But the medicine also makes him very tired. Which is why when he visits you and Z, he just likes to sit there and doesn’t talk much or have the energy to play with you.

This whole time Little E was taking it all in and asking a few questions here and there, but then he asked this ‘how did you disobey?’

It occurred to me that Little E STILL remembers what happened to me (he was unfortunately in the room) and also still views it as a spanking. I do spank my kids very rarely, but I don’t beat them like E did me. I think because I closely monitor what my kids watch on TV or see online etc, this was the only ‘violence’ he’d really known. So the only word he had to describe one person hitting another in any fashion, was spanking. And therefore, since I obviously don’t spank my kids for fun, he associated it with the fact that I must’ve been being disciplined for something I’d done wrong in the eyes of E. Totally reasonable though process for a 6 year old.

So I explained that (please bear with my very basic explanation, he’s 6 not 16, I had to make sure I was on his level) husbands and wives don’t have to obey each other like kids should obey their parents. Parents have to teach kids because you’re still learning and we are there to guide you. But moms and dads should be a team. Not one the boss of the other. I’m still on your team Little E, but I’m coach. There’s a difference. Ok? He kinda nodded but I think he still wanted to know what I did wrong to warrant such a ‘spanking’. Probably so he could avoid that behavior in the future and not get in such “trouble” himself.

But I reassured him that dads medication made sure that when he’s with Little E and Z, he’s ok. Meanwhile my mind is screaming out a million ‘what if’s’ ¬†And reminded him that we’re doing great and having fun living in our house with just the 3 of us.

That’s when he pulled out “Maybe I’ll have another dad one day, that would live with us!” And I said yep. (and then of course the tears welled up, seriously what is wrong with me these days) One day mommy will maybe start dating a man and then get married and you and him can talk about him being your dad. Because Little E, E will always be your dad, but… and then he interrupted and said ‘but then I could have two dads!’ With a big smile on his face. I said ‘one day, maybe.’

And in my head simply thought how much I wanted that for him as he joined his sister in the park.


-Metallica/Mama Said-

B*tch Better Have My Money, Pay Me What You Owe Me

$36,408.00 That’s how much E currently owes me in back pay for child support.

I’ve been trying to sort this thing out with my lawyer for what feels like forever now, and I feel like (hopefully) we’re nearing the finish line with this whole divorce. To be honest, it could’ve been much worse than how it’s gone though.

Yes, E is extremely difficult to work with and I have a love/hate relationship with leaving the kids with him, since while technically I get a break from them, I spend the whole time worrying about how he’s probably not caring for them properly, so there’s really no relief.

But to be truthful, we’ve had a fairly amicable divorce. There’s none of that “trying to get the kids against the other parent” stuff happening. One, because E just lives in his own little world in his head and that’s too much thinking on his part to try and manipulate little brains against their mother, and two, I don’t waste effort on bringing him into our¬†conversation in my house when he’s not around. If the kids ask to call him, I let them for sure, although it’s only Z who does and maybe only once every 2-3 months. Also, to avoid conflict,¬†my family and I have come up with a code name for E so if we want to discuss the divorce or anything about him and the kids are around (although we try to avoid that) we can use his alias and then talk freely without worrying about tainting the kids view of him.

We also didn’t have that unspoken “competition” to see who would find a successful¬†new relationship first. Basically because I feel like E will most likely never be in a relationship again. Now don’t get it twisted, I totally think people with severe mental health issues can be in long lasting healthy relationships, but I just unfortunately don’t see that happening for E. He’s just not capable of it. As for me? I really wish him the best, and if he does find someone to marry…. I would wish them all the best like literally because they would need it, but I wouldn’t feel pressured to race to find someone myself if E was “first” to reach that milestone. To each their own you know.

But now after 3 years and 2 months since filing for divorce, 2 lawyers, and one psych ward lock up later, we’re nearing the end (again fingers crossed).¬†Plus it looks like it will be worth it. $36,000+ worth it.

When I think of that amount… I get frustrated. I think of the standard of life my kids and I have been living for the past 3 years, while we could have been enjoying 12 grand more a year? It pisses me off. My kids could’ve had those lessons they wanted instead of chilling at home every night. Or the newest toy for Christmas that everyone was talking about instead of just new pyjamas and underwear. We wouldn’t have had to live with my parents until a year ago. Their college funds could’ve been jacked by now! It just would’ve, and apparently should’ve been much better in the past if E had paid up like he was supposed to. But since he’s a cheapskate, my kids missed out on some things that should’ve been theirs.¬†Although in the past little while, since I finished school and got a job, I’ve been able to provide all those things on my own. And yes, the support E sends each month, although not as much as he’s supposed to send, is welcome, it’s just nice to know the kids and I would still be alright without it.

Now… I just have to plan a nice $36,000 vacation! Suggestions?


-Rihanna/BBHMM-

I Tear Myself Open I Sew Myself Shut / Our Scars Remind Us That the Past Is Real. 

My biggest physical scar is from E. We had been apart for about 9 months due to his immigration issues. So he was stuck in Kenya and I had had to come back to Canada to support us and Little E. I sent E money every week for his rent and groceries and whatever else he needed. But finally, in the new year of 2012, it had just been too long apart. Too long with just long distance calls or Skyping. Too long where we had only been texting. Too long since Little E had seen and felt his dad. So in a last minute move I got two weeks off work in January and Little E and I were on our way back to Kenya for a visit.

I’m sure you can imagine that travel with small children is not the most pleasant experience. You’d be right, it’s not. But imagine traveling with a boy who’s 18 months old, on a trip that will take at least 45 hours one way. AND… throw an 18 hour straight flight from Dubai to Toronto on the way back in there. It is draining. You don’t sleep. The food you eat upsets your stomach, but even worse your kid’s stomach. You are constantly making sure your child is ok, and not bothering anyone else. On top of the regular stressors travel brings… finding gates, catching planes, maintaining passports and other documents, carrying luggage, navigating new cities, attempting to communicate in foreign languages, sleeping in new beds/airport seats. All of that, plus a kid or two. Not my definition of glamorous to say the least.

Either way, I set out with Little E tucked in a sling and my trusty bag in tow. Thankfully this trip wasn’t as eventful as my last trip with Little E. He behaved exceptionally well, and the stewardesses even found me a great spot on all my flights with an extra spot for Little E.¬†Bonus!

E bussed to Nairobi to meet us there. I had asked him to find us a hotel there for us to spend the night before we had to bus back to his sisters house the next day. This turned out to be a Herculean task for E, which in hindsight, I should have anticipated and just took care of myself. The hotel he found was two towns over. So he had arranged for us to take a taxi for almost two hours to the bed and breakfast place he had found. It was a cute little place, but to be honest, after being stuck on a plane, in a chair for the past two days, the last thing I wanted to do was sit in a car for another 2 hours. All I could think about were the zillion hotels we were driving past as we inched into the night to the one E had booked us into.

Either way, we finally got to this secluded place. We were the only guests staying there, and because of the drive, we didn’t arrive until close to 3 am. It took about 15-20 minutes to rouse the guard at the gate, and then get someone awake to get us into our room.

As we were shown into our room, E was holding Little E, which was great, I wanted them to bond. But it left me with the luggage, not as great. I had packed a huge hockey bag¬†of things for E that he had asked me to bring that he needed/wanted from Canada and that thing weighed a ton. Also, at some point during one of the flights, part of it has torn, exposing some metal wiring on the bottom, which I didn’t realize as I dragged it in.

I asked E to help me get the bag out of the way of the door, and as he lifted it up to throw it on the bed, the exposed wires cut a huge gash on the front of my calf. The cut was so long and deep I learned more about the inside of my body that day than anything the Magic School Bus ever taught me.

It also wouldn’t stop bleeding for the life of me.

At first I headed to the bathroom and just tried rinsing it off, but it kept bleeding, so I grabbed a shirt of E’s and tied a makeshift tourniquet around my leg to slow the blood, and dropped into bed. I was exhausted after my trip and just wanted to sleep, but instead had to keep waking up to change the “bandage.” I ended up going through 4 of E’s shirts in 6 hours during the night before the bleeding showed any signs of slowing.

I asked E to find a Dr. or somewhere we could go so I could get stitches, something that seems like I obviously needed to anyone with a simple glance at the injury. But nope. E said he was too tired. What? You? I’M the one who just flew around the world with our 18 month old kid on her own. I’m the one who’s been working her¬†butt off to support our kid and you! I’m the one who’s loosing mass amounts of blood from a cut you caused. But you’re too tired?

Ok. Thanks. I just arrived in the country. I have no phone to use, it’s about¬†4¬†in the morning, and I don’t even know what town I’m in. So I really didn’t have much choice but to wait until the morning when he wasn’t “as tired” to get help.

Well, by the morning, the bleeding had slowed and so by this point I didn’t care about getting stitches as much as I cared about getting to E’s sisters place and attempting to get a decent sleep.

We grabbed a matatu and after another bumpy 8 hour ride arrived at our final destination. Once his sisters saw the state of my leg, they were PISSED that¬†he hadn’t taken me for stitches. They spent the evening disinfecting and bandaging my leg like I was a wounded solider. Well that and berating E for not taking me to the doctor that I had so obviously required.

And yep. I’ll admit I was petty and reveled in the fact that they felt the same way I did, and therefore treated him poorly, that they were making him feel bad about not helping me. Because it’s not like I expected him to magically heal me, or sew me up himself. But I would’ve appreciated if he had acknowledged my body was broken and needed to be fixed. And at the very least wanted to see me whole.

But no. E was always only about E. No matter whose blood was spilled in the process.


-Papa Roach/Scars-

I’m Friends With The Monster That’s Under My Bed. Get Along With The Voices Inside Of My Head

Once E was served with divorce papers, he called me freaking out. It took over two months for my lawyer and I to get everything straightened out on paper and all the proper documents filled out, before he was actually notified on April 29, 2014. All the time between my flying back from Kenya and him being served, I think he thought I was joking, or just playing a game, hoping he would change or something. I honestly don’t know why he was so surprised that I actually filed for divorce. When I say I’m going to do something, I do it…

But, those papers¬†started a whole myriad of amazing lies on his part.¬† Time after time I was left speechless at the items he put in his “sworn statements.” Things he “promised” were the truth, and it just confirmed to me how much of a liar I’d been married too.

First and foremost, he claimed, under oath, that he had caught me IN BED with our farm boy that Sunday morning back in January, but no violence occurred,¬†and so he wanted to divorce me because of that. Seriously? At this point E, I don’t even care as long as I get out of this marriage to you. But then it went on to say that I had beat up his mother when I was trying to leave Kenya (claiming she had¬†suffered a concussion) and that the incident with his father and the van never occurred. Oh common, I have picture evidence!¬†Next, he said that I owed him some $21,000.00 for some reason, yet to still be determined. Haha for real? Dude, you haven’t held a long-term¬†steady job our entire relationship! I’ve paid for¬†practically everything in our lives, meaning houses/land, schooling, cars, and multiples cross-continental trips every time you had a whim that you wanted to move back and forth between Kenya & Canada. If anything you owe me a ridiculous sum of money. But¬†I wasn’t asking for money. All I wanted was a life free from E. As soon as possible.

Life never works out like that though. Because after I left E, his mental health deteriorated quickly. He slowly stopped answering phone calls, and even texts became too much for him. He started missing meetings with his lawyer which delayed everything even more than necessary. I was finally on the phone with him one day after not hearing from him for a while to discuss a court date. I asked him how he was doing, knowing his past problems with anxiety. He shared with me then, that he was too scared to leave his house to even get groceries. I tried my best to convince him to get help, to find a Dr., or someone he felt comfortable confiding in to talk to, but nothing ever came of it.

Then, a couple of weeks later, he went missing. Not answering calls, or texts. He even missed showing up to a prearranged visit with the kids. So I got worried.¬†Just because¬†I no longer wanted to be the man’s wife, didn’t mean I wanted anything bad to happen to him (or anyone). So the search was on. He had been staying with a guy from work, who said he hadn’t seen him in a couple of days (also mentioned to me that E owed him rent money if I felt like paying for him, haha no thanks). I called his work, who said E didn’t show up to the plane to head up to camp for his latest shift. I called some of his family in Kenya, as well as his one brother living in the States… No one had heard from him.

So I ended up calling¬†the police to file¬†a missing person report. I explained that he might be dangerous, and that he didn’t have all his faculties at the moment. They,¬†again, weren’t helpful. They explained that even if they did find him, they couldn’t do anything. E was a grown ass man. If he didn’t want anyone to know where he was, than the police couldn’t inform me of his whereabouts even if they did locate him. Fine. I was just trying to be helpful. It’s the middle of January and I’m thinking he’s out on the streets somewhere, afraid of life and no ones around to help. And so I felt bad. During this time, I felt bad for leaving him. I felt like I had been the stability in his life, and maybe if I had stayed with E, then his illness would’ve never progressed to this point. I felt like my leaving him had “pushed him over the edge” so to speak.

But then a phone call came. It was E, and he was on his way across the country. He told me he had sold everything he owed except what fit in one suitcase, and had bought a bus ticket to Ottawa. What??? WHY??? Oh, C. Don’t ask a mentally ill person to explain their actions… because then you get answers like the following…

He felt like people were out to get him, and so he didn’t feel safe where he was. Umm Ok? Why Ottawa though? Two reasons, he has one old friend from Kenya who lived there, and the Kenyan Embassy was located there. What the heck was the Embassy going to do? You need a Doctor! I couldn’t hear much else over the phone so our call was ended abruptly since the bus was going through a¬†tunnel of sorts, but I knew he was at least alive. I called his family to let them know where he was and to let the friend in Ottawa know to expect E. I had to then call the police and cancel my missing person report, even though I knew they had been putting zero effort into finding him regardless.

Another two months or so went by with no word from E. Until finally one day I receive an email from his email address, but I knew right away it wasn’t him who had written it. “He” asked how the kids were doing and also needed some paperwork from me. I emailed back asking where he had been for the last month, and who was writing his emails and then they whole story came out. Kinda… Well as good as it gets with this man.

According to E, after he got to Ottawa, he somehow found his old rugby buddy and stayed with him for a bit. But the “voices” became too much for him. And the paranoia was so bad, that his friend found him one morning sleeping UNDER the bed to hide from whatever was out to get him. So at that point, his friend took him to the hospital. Where he’s been officially diagnosed with a severe case of paranoid schizophrenia, depression and extreme anxiety. He was locked up in the psych ward, fed a¬†concoction of medication, and hadn’t had access to his phone or email¬†until that day, since he had earned access outside the ward.¬†His therapist had helped him write the initial email to me.

In some ways I felt relieved that he was finally getting help. I felt like it validated my feelings of frustration. Trying for years to make a marriage work. A relationship work. But constantly feeling like I wasn’t getting through. Feeling like he was never listening to me. In a way, he never was. He was listening to all the voices in his head. The voices telling him everyone was against him. That I was against him. It explained a lot, and although¬†it didn’t forgive his behavior, it made me feel like less of a failure. Like I had done all that I could, but he was legitimately ill.¬†I could’ve tried ’til I was blue in the face, but nothing would’ve helped our marriage. Not until he received the proper care he needed, and I and others had continually suggested. And now he was getting it.

E was held in the psychiatric ward in Ottawa for¬†about 4-5¬†months. The doctors called me a few times asking for a little background information, and informed me of his treatment plan. I had to explain many times that we were no longer a couple and that no, I wouldn’t be helping him once he was released. E ended up staying with his friend in Ottawa for about 3 months once he was released from the ward to maintain his follow up visits. The Doctors wanted to make sure he was continuing up on his medication and counselling, letting me know that there is no cure for his condition, and that he would be on medication for life. Also letting me know that¬†a relapse is likely, and that if there was a history of violence, there was a strong possibility of more violence.

E’s friend was fine with having him stay there, but after a while, I could tell that he was getting a little frustrated with E’s extended stay, and I had to break it down to E in the simplest of terms. He couldn’t live with his friend forever. His friend was married with two kids, and although I’m sure they’d enjoyed this time to catch up,¬†he and his wife¬†probably wanted to get back to their own life. E was able to call his old job and get his previous position back for himself, even though his hours/duties had to be modified as per doctors orders. I was probably¬†just as glad as his friend was for him to start back at work, because I’d been missing out on child support payments for the last 8-9 months.

Now that E is on medication, he is a little more reliable as far as payments for the kids go, but the medication has changed him. He is constantly tired and has gained a solid 75 lbs is not more. His thinking¬†has slowed dramatically and it’s like talking to a kid, which is ironic, because that’s how I felt dealing with him before. When he does get to see¬†our kids (about once a month) he takes them to the same place and just sits there while he watches them play. Actually, now that I think about it… that’s pretty much how he was before minus the weight gain. So not much has changed.

Cest La Vie


-Eminem/Monster-

I Got A Notion To Say What Doesn’t Feel Right

As it stands now, I hate Mother’s Day.

This will be my 7th Mother’s Day, and I’ve yet to enjoy a single one. Yes, I’ve been a single parent for 3 of them already, coming up on my forth this Sunday, and I’m actually dreading it.

When married to E, he never understood the whole concept of celebrating the woman who gave birth to his children. The woman who brought life into the world. It never occurred to him to actually do anything special for me, whether it be something as simple as a card or flowers or something more extravagant (Ha, yea right). But nope, nothing. Ever.

So I learned to keep my expectations super low.

But now, as a single mom, for some reason people feel the need to bring up “How hard it must be” or “How do you do it alone”¬†and all that crap on Mother’s Day. But then they have no follow up to it. No offers to help or anything. It’s like, I don’t need your pity. I don’t need a holiday to acknowledge my status of pushing a human out of my vagina. I have my¬†life everyday to show me the reality of that.

What I need is a vacation. Or a night away from my kids. Or a simple massage.

So, no. I don’t need your words saying “I’m doing great” or “you could only imagine how hard it must be” Because first off, I know I’m doing a fantastic job of raising my kids. Your two cents makes no difference in how I choose to parent. But also, yeah, it’s beyond difficult. And I do struggle every day. Not just one stupid Sunday in May when Hallmark decided they wanted to make a huge profit. This is my life. 24/7. So keep your¬†moronic comments to yourself. Don’t try to appease your guilt by talking to me on this one day a year. If you truly cared, or wanted to imagine what it must be like for me, why don’t you try it for a night. Why don’t you actually offer to take my kids for a night?

I have my kids ALL THE TIME. Which I am SOOOO grateful for because I don’t want them to have to spend a single¬†night with E. So yeah, after 3 years I do basically have sole custody. But that doesn’t mean I don’t wish for a break sometimes. After 3 years I’ve had¬†a couple¬†nights where my kids have slept at my parents house. Maybe¬†4 or 5¬†nights total in over¬†3 years. A handful of nights in more than 1175 nights where I didn’t have to do the bedtime routine alone.¬†I can count on one hand the number of¬†nights where I could relax and sleep in as late as I wanted and not have to worry about what are my kids going to eat for breakfast.¬†A few¬†nights where I could walk around my house naked and not have to worry about scarring my son for life ;0 .

But the other thousand and change… was me and my kids… and no one else.

So I don’t wanna hear you saying “Happy Mother’s Day C” with a fake smile this Sunday. Cause no. It’s gonna be a Sunday like every other Sunday. Where I’m going to wake up in bed alone, with no breakfast on my nightstand. I’m going to go down to my kitchen. I’m going to make my kids breakfast. I’m going to wash the dishes. I’m going to help Z get dressed for the day. I’m going to make sure the kids wash their faces and brush their teeth.¬†I’m going to open the handmade cards from my kids that have been sitting there since Friday, that they made at school/daycare. I’m going to appreciate them like nothing else.

And I truly want that to be it.

I don’t want those dumb e-cards. Or generic emails. Or annoying voicemails, because you know I’m not answering your call this weekend. Or ridiculous Facebook posts. Or obtuse comments from hypocritical people. Because they are not at all heartfelt or helpful. They are posted to make you feel better. They are zero help to me.

Just please leave me and my kids alone.

Like you do the other 364 days of the year.


-Kings Of Leon/Notion-