I will be in the process of recalibrating my life in relationship to my ex-wife probably for the rest of my life. Even after the kids are off and doing their own lives, there are always collective contributions that need to be made, adult advice that needs to be given, and we will never fully separate from the relationship.
Health and fitness begin in your mind. Can you eat better? Can you exercise 3 – 5 times a week? Can you give your own body the love you’d like to shower on a partner? Health is your number one commodity as you get older. Stay healthy by taking little steps towards a better, stronger, you.
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Fitness and health are the currency of growing old. Let’s do it with intention. Don’t hope to catch up later, get on a health kick, eat better, sleep better, love better. Your fitness and health are the most important things in your life. (Maybe after mental health, in my case.)
I learned that one person cannot keep a marriage together no matter how hard they try or how much they want to keep the family together. I was in agreement that things could not continue as they had been.
The last time I moved into my own place, I did not have any help. The new ship is filled with her things. Wow. Her energy is here even when she is not. I know, it's still early, but she's got a great attitude and approach to getting stuff done.
That's how the first home base became a hostile environment for both of us. We labored to keep the kids out of the fray and we began couples counseling two very different perspectives.
There are plenty of single parents who use their kids to get out of almost every obligation. Even obligations to themselves, for say... exercise, dating, taking responsibility for their own actions. And I have been the dad who apologized for checking his phone when a text dinged while on a date.
Though I had no map for the road ahead, I did have my own core happiness and strength. And even though the future had suddenly appeared darker and more ominous I responded with laughter. The situation was not funny.
I wish my co-parent all the joy and love in the world. I can no longer provide any of those things. But I can be a soft cushion when she needs to hit or collapse into something. I resolve not to hit back. But, I won't stand-in for the drama anymore. I will only take my responsibility. I will only pay attention to the business between us as we continue together in co-parenting.
And I can still recall twice in my life, the thrill of that moment when I realized my heart was spinning out of control and there was nothing I'd rather do than be with this other beautiful person. Whew! Only twice? Dang, that's inspiration enough.