Someone asked me tonight how long ago my STBX (soon to be ex) and I have been separated. I thought about it for a moment and realized that it was about this time last year. Then I realized that I knew how to find out the exact date. When my STBX and I decided to separate I wrote my first “Dear Toby”. It was a couple of months later I started my first blog. However, it was in that first “Dear Toby” that I realized that blogging/ writing out my thoughts and feelings could be something that I could do and should do.
The first “Dear Toby” is something that I never thought I would share with anyone other than Toby. However, I reread that first “Dear Toby” and realized that as my readers, friends and family you have read post after post about me being a single dad, the lessons learned from being a parent, have traveled with me through angst and circumstances. For that I am eternally grateful. The comments and support have been amazing. I am always caught off guard when someone comes up and says “hey I liked your last post” or “I enjoy reading your blog”. I’ve always imagined this post to be a reflection of me and who I am. To keep in line with that; the following is the first “Dear Toby”:
Dear Toby, (1/22/13)
Today I’m pretty sad. I would hope that my first entry to you would not be a bad one but a joyful one. However, as most human beings I find myself contemplative in times of distress. Your mother and I last night decided to separate with the intent of getting divorced. I want to let you know that this separation is not because of you or that you are the cause of it. Even the beginning of that last statement is a complex. We are separating and you have a big part in it. We are currently not happy. We love each other but we are not friends. We don’t hang out and we don’t want to do things with each other. We both understand that wanting to be with each other should be a huge part of a marriage. With that said we also understand that we could push through this and try and maintain our previous course. The consequences of that would be huge. We would be rolling the dice on developing resentment and anger toward one another. Even if one of us is unhappy, the effect that it would have on our family as a whole would be devastating, more importantly the effect it would have on you would be devastating. We both love you too much to risk putting you through that. One thing that I have learned through my job is that parents cannot hide their issues from their kids and if they try then it makes things worse for the kids. In the end if your mom and I are happy in our lives then we will be better parents to you. If we are unhappy then the chances of us passing that on to you becomes great. Again, we love you too much to do that to you. I love you son. You are an amazing person and have enormous potential.