The Men Who Transcends

Are you ready to do this?  It is long overdue. Why today?  This is my way of giving back and moving forward with my life. I want the men out there who are struggling with their baby’s mommas to know they can be good fathers no matter where they are. Whether or not they live in the home, outside the home,  in another city, state, or country.  The biggest mistake I made was using the children for chess pieces to get back at Andre. My anger led me to put him in court, tie his money up, and deny him access to the kids.  When it was time for him to pick up the kids I made all type of flimsy excuses.  Any person Andre attempted to start a relationship with I was up in the mix destroying the path with my pack of lies making him out to be a rotten father and poor provided to his kids.

Why? Did he cheat on you? I believe I was cheated out of TIME. Andre missed school plays, lose track of time, never could remember my birthday or the kids.  He never was able to read me. Andre was slow at figuring things out.  Andre’s mind was like a blank slate. I got tired of feeling in the pieces of the puzzle.  It appeared as though Andre got along with his partners and he would rather be with them more than me. I always felt the people around Andre guarded him. There were times I felt l excluded.  There was so much I thought Andre should know but he didn’t understand.  Did you try to explain it to him? No! So you just assumed Andre knew.  You said you got tired of feeling in the pieces of the puzzle. I meant I just went ahead with my own program. At this point, I was so frustrated.  I stop caring. Andre could figure out his own program.  He never saw the writing on the wall.

What do you mean by the writing on the wall?  I decided to leave him. Where did you move to? Did you take the kids? No! I couldn’t afford to financially leave at the time because I was not financially able. My body was still located at the same address but my mind had moved out. So when I got financially able I would pack my bags and move everything which included my body,  kids,  and all. I decided I would put him through a living hell.  Did you ever stop and think Andre may have felt as if he was in a living hell?   He loved you but it was so much in your relationship which needs to be pointed out and explained.

What attracted you to Andre? He acted like a big kid. It may not have been an act. What do you mean?  Did Andre need more guidance or direction than any of your other male friends? Yes, but a lot of times I played it off and thought he was being silly.  Andre appeared to be so immature.   I thought Andre wanted me to run the show.  Now that I am reflecting back on our relationship I did make the majority of the decisions. So you were the one who always had a plan. That is right. Andre would always tell me to go ahead and do what makes me happy and he would be happy.  Whenever we got into the planning phase he would get frustrated. What happens next? I would get angry and tell him I would do it myself. How did he react? He would retreat to his man-cave and would not come out for hours. Sometimes he would go sit in the park and listen to his iPod.  Was Andre angry when he returned home?   No, it was as though he had forgotten what happen or he just did not want to discuss the issue.  His favorite saying was, “Let’s not do this again, I hate repeating myself.”  One thing I did learn you could never win an argument it would go on and on. Andre knew a lot of information. You just had to cut him off when the conversation seemed to be going nowhere.  Did he get mad? No! The conversation would end. He would move to the next topic.

How did Andre react toward the kids?  He was great with the kids. As a matter of fact, he was the biggest kid of all.  So why were you so hell-bent on destroying the relationship and keeping him away from his children. I didn’t feel as though I  knew how to be a good wife. What did you feel like? Honestly! I felt more like I needed more attention but he was draining the life out of me. Andre was the 3rd child. Did you ever seek to counsel?  No!  I had become so frustrated I  just wanted out. Did you ever think Andre needed help with his mental processing? I don’t know, by this time I felt so worn down the only option for me was to get a divorce.

After Andre and I got a divorce he went into a deep depression. His sister stepped in and she immediately sought out help. How did you feel about his sister?  I was so jealous of her because she always had Andre’s back. Did she take sides in the marriage? No! She was always trying to give me advice on things that could help us get through the rough spots. It made me think she was always around the corner. I was his wife and I wanted her to back off. This may sound so wrong but I felt at the time he got what he deserved. It was very wrong.  It took Andre about 6 years to recover himself. He remained a good father and he continued to support me and the children. Andre wrote a book on his struggles and the new women in his life. He told of how she helped him recover through his crisis. I was pissed and went into a rage. Why?  It felt as though I was invisible and our marriage had never existed.  His life took a different path.  He had become successful and moved on.I felt isolated and left behind.  What did you do? I took him back to court.  I was so angry and so determined to destroy Andre. The judge ruled in his favor and my request for additional child support was denied.

I went home and I thought the only recourse to take was denied him the right to see the children. The kids began to turn on me and began to express how they hated staying with me. Their school grades began to drop. Trouble began to show up on my doorstep. The rebellion was on. They wanted to see their dad. I realized I had messed up. What made you change? He invited me over so we could talk about the kids. I was very reluctant to go. I went and his wife, Sandra answered the door.   I held my breath. She was really friendly. She escorted me into the dining room. I was feeling very nervous and anxious. Andre came out and gave me a big hug. He really looked happy. I could not sense any resentment or hostility from Andre nor his wife. He began to talk about the kids and how he missed them. There was such a glow in his eyes. I began to feel horrible for robbing him of his time with the kids. Sandra, Andre’s wife,  went on and on about the kids and how they were her big helpers. As I watch both of them together I realize she understood him.  Sandra responded to Andre in a manner that I had a very difficult time with.   My heart was put at ease.  Sandra was good for Andre. As the evening came to a close Sandra got up to go into the kitchen to bring out her surprise dessert. She had baked a red velvet cake. I love red velvet cake. Inscribed in the middle of the cake it said,  “The Men Who Transcends Respect, Support And Love Their Children And Families To The End. Happy Father Day!”



We Never Thought We Would Get The Credit

The young men I talk to wanted me to hold off on their stories until after Father’s Day.  There were several incidents involving extramarital affairs. The guys just didn’t feel the TIME was right. They all strongly felt they would never get the credit or receive the RECOGNITION… mothers are validated for parenting their children.

Conversing with these young men revealed friends, other family members and associates who always would give the mother strong RECOGNITION as the award-winning parent.  Many fathers who do not take responsibility for their children. This has given those fathers who want to share in the responsibility of raising their children a bad reputation.

Labels like absentee fathers, deadbeat dads, no call no-show fathers, are hard to live down. They want to participate in their child’s life. It is their biggest fear of not having their fathers in their life, making it very devastating for them not to participate in the lives of their children.

Many of the laws have changed concerning children’s placement with their parents. Courts are in session and the men feel more negotiation and emphasis is being placed on the child’s best interest instead of the parents. It gives the men more hope and an equal opportunity they will not be disregarded in the child’s placement. These fathers worried about their children being moved around as chest pieces or used as bargaining chips. Men feel more hoops are put in place for them to jump through in comparison to the mothers.  It is worth the training day at the circus just to be around their kids. The stories of these young men are told from the perspective of the FLIP SIDE OF THE CHART. It tells of the struggles they had with their fathers, how they hid their unique abilities and the effect it had on their own relationships. It demonstrates what these young men had to do in order to maintain being a father. No matter what it took, breaking a vicious cycle of not being a loving, supportive, and a responsible parent was No. 1 on the list for these men. It is the VALIDATION of CREDITABILITY that lends true RECOGNITION TO LIFE. Everyone has a story to tell, being heard is significant but understanding what one hears gives RECOGNITION to those who thought they would not get the credit.

Waiting By The Window

Dear Dad:

You always seem to understand my frustration. Not one time did you holler at me or ridicule me for my clumsiness when you took me out to play football. It never appeared to bother you that I had the worst coordination in the world. When I did not make the play, you never stopped encouraging me. I loved it when you would toss me up in the air and say,”You are my champion.” Even when I violated your space, you would laugh and call me your SPACE INVADER. You would go get the tape measure and you would show me where I should stand to keep from violating other people’s personal space.

When it was time to clean my room, you always gave me a heads up on where I should start first. I loved the saying, “We will build one skill at a TIME.” It was funny how I was sitting in the middle of the floor and you walked into the room and sat beside me. I looked at you and you looked at me and we both started laughing. Dad, I was so glad you didn’t get angry because 2 hours had passed and the room was totaled. You told me I just needed a jumpstart like a battery. The sticky notes helped so much. You only listed 5 items for me to do. Once I had learned those tasks, you would slowly add a new task. I figured I was making progress. I was so excited to see another task added on. It seemed like it took forever but Dad, you waited for me to get it.

I remember when we went to our favorite eating place and you leaned over and told me I had my shirt on backward. The look on your face was priceless when I told you they make shirts that look like they are inside out. I bought the shirt for a strategy so people would think I was keeping up with the trend. Concept formation is hard for me and this was one way of my dealing with putting my clothes on backward. Whenever we would go shopping, we would buy shirts with the decals on the front so I would know if my shirt was on right. The wristband you had made at the jeweler was a good way for helping me determine my right from my left. I love the engraving on it… “This is my right-hand man.”

Dad, you made me feel like I was Paula Dean’s son in the kitchen. You took the initiative to buy me all those gadgets from Bed, Bath, and Beyond. I had an apple slicer, Nicer Dicer, Instant Chopper, and One Step Can Opener… any contraption that would keep me from severing my fingers or accidentally slicing my wrist. You would tease me and say, “Son we don’t want people to think you tried to commit SIDEWAYS in the kitchen.” I thought it was hilarious when I almost cut my finger off and you looked over at the pot of spaghetti and then looked at me said, “Want to go to dinner because I’m eating no fingers today.”

We had candles of every scent, fountains, and I couldn’t walk through the house without my feet landing on a different type of rug or carpet. Every time my feet hit the carpet or rug it brought so much ease to my body. At night my room looked like a church cathedral or it felt like a spa with the fountains. I loved the swivel chairs in my room. I had such a hard TIME getting to sleep. When you would bring me the hot chamomile tea it wouldn’t be long before it was lights out for the night.

I love the MAD-O-Meter you placed on my door. Before I would escalate you would walk me over to the MAD-O-Meter and have me point to the color. We would discuss if I wasn’t too angry what happened to cause the problem or the chain of events that led up to my trip to ANGER LAND. If I was too ANGRY, you would bring me the apple cinnamon tea, and say it was BREW TIME. I would sit and BREW because I took everything literally. It really did help me to calm down.

Wow! Dad, you had so many strategies and coping skills for me. I hope I can accommodate you like you accommodated me. We both were unprepared for this. I am so afraid for you. The doctors have talked to me several TIMES about your stroke. Putting the pieces of the puzzle together is so hard for me. Too bad Mom is not here to help me get through this. I didn’t realize that she has been dead for 7 years. Here I am in this place looking through this glass window. You look so helpless and weak. Can you hear me, DAD? I know I am not NURSE BETTY but I will try my best. We can do this DAD. I can’t lose you too.

You even trained people through the years if anything were to happen to you I would have another GRAND GUARDIAN in place. I don’t want another Grand Guardian. I need you, DAD. No matter how long it takes I will be sitting here WAITING BY THE WINDOW for your recovery. Mom is watching over us today. I will ask her and GOD to go in their conference chambers and work something out for me and you to spend a little more TIME together. I LOVE YOU DAD. You have been a good father to me.

Dedicated: This is dedicated to all the FATHERS who have broken the cycle from being the absentee DAD and have shown true dedication to their children no matter what the circumstances are. To all my NLDERS the strategies and coping skills mentioned in this letter can be very beneficial. Turn on your QUIET STORM MUSIC and RELAX WITH YOUR WARM FUZZY BLANKET and PLAY IT TO THE TUNE OF GUY__LET’S CHILL. IN RECOGNITION OF NLD SYNDROME NOW.