Sunday, April 17, 2016

The other guys

Tonight, something inside of me shifted.

Over the last few days, I have been mourning the absence of my children's dad in their lives, as he has now chosen to ignore each of their birthdays and Christmas and Easter, some of the most significant dates and holidays in the year. I found myself thinking he should be here, or even send a card. I found myself wondering if the children even cross his mind.

As I was looking through some photos tonight, I felt tears trickle down my cheeks. I had to stop and process.

What I found surprised me. I wasn't sad. 

I was overwhelmed with gratitude.

While it is utterly heart breaking to know he walked away and my children are left to miss him and wonder where he is or if they will ever see him again, I realized how incredibly blessed we are that God has given them a group of "other guys" in their lives.

I know, as do my children, that these men will never be a replacement or substitute for their dad. But, they are so fortunate to have these men in their lives, helping to show them their value, that they are wonderful, important people who are worthy of being loved. These men have chosen to step into my childrens' lives, or chosen to remain in their lives despite the fact that they could have walked away alongside their father because they were first connected to me through their father. There are also equally important men that are my family, who choose to love them so deeply and dearly as well. All of these men invest their hearts into my children, creating lasting, positive memories, hugging and holding them, helping them feel safe and secure, and letting them see what good men are like and how good men treat people.

And even if some day, for some reason, these men are no longer in our lives, the fact that they are here right now, and have been during such tribulations, and during the childrens' early formative years means the impact is significant enough to last a lifetime.

I have known these men love my children, and they love me, and they want us to be happy. I have known it, and I have felt it to be true. 

But tonight, it shifted, and the impact is deeper and greater than I was able to comprehend or allow myself to feel before. Tonight, it overwhelmed me.

Thank you, other guys, for what you have given to me and my children by choosing to care so deeply. You know who you are, I hope.

1 comment:

  1. No Nicole it is us that should be thanking you. Many times in my lifetime I have seen these circumstances arise and the mothers who choose to bury their sorrows in unhealthy ways and close off to the ills they fear of other men. You have remained open and honest and giving and caring. That we the other guys may still have a chance to impact the lives of your children if even in only smallest ways. Your oldest is extremely perceptive from his point of view and you nurture that even while in some situations he is fearful of his surroundings and new "adventures".

    We are thankful to be able to see your children and see you in them and how you have taught them and guide them in their daily lives. We are just the smallest part of their growing up whereas you, you are their rock and their comforter may it be from within or from Gods help you are so much greater than you ever give yourself credit for. I don't know how you do it a guy never will. I don't know how my mother did it but I attribute my caring and understanding from her and in my position do not want you to think we are enabling or a crutch or anything of that sort. You, Nicole, are a strong wonderful mother and I see that in the faces of your beautiful children every day I see them or even a picture of them. Hear their laughter and I think of how you have molded them. They are a gift to you and us from God that we can witness love by and through each one of them.