Fucking Frost

Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.–R. Frost

Scholars have spent abundant paragraphs discussing the true meaning of these and other lines in R. Frost’s famous poem, The Road Not Taken. My pet favorite used to be that he was talking about choices in life in the general sense (As a side note, how sad is it that one of my favorite literary greats and my estranged marital partner share a first name?). It makes perfect sense that you’d find that the road you took made all the difference–you’re too far removed from the other road to know what might have been, and as some other famous bards (the band Little Texas) once sang, “We can’t go back again,/there’s no use giving in,/and there’s no way to know, what might have been.”

What Frost left out and Little Texas tried to mention, is that there are many reasons why those roads will not be traveled again. Sometimes you get too lost to find your way back as Frost alluded to, but sometimes the road is blown away by an IED.


Sometimes the road is a bridge and it collapses, killing hundreds of people in one foul swoop. Sometimes the road is a red carpet ripped up before you’ve felt your 15 minutes of fame should have been over. Sometimes that road is a relationship you thought would last forever but the person dies or leaves you or pushes you out of their lives…

That’s my road…and I couldn’t let it go. I kept looking back at it longingly, hoping maybe the potholes had been repaired, hoping the No Trespassing! sign had been taken down, hoping the Beware of Dog! sign was a joke…

But tonight something happened that forced me to turn away from the road for good. In the middle of a tear-filled texting conversation with mi esposo, I asked him what could possibly have been so important today that it kept him from calling his innocent four year old daughter who talks about him all the time and constantly begs me to move back so she can have her mommy and her daddy at the same time again…

Apparently the so important thing was playing video games, watching movies, and spending time with his new girlfriend.

Yes.

That shattered what was left of my heart…as a dear friend would say–he delivered the kill shot.

He says he met this possibly wonderful woman–that I never want to meet and have killed several times in nightmares recently without knowing for sure that she existed–a month after I left town. I don’t know if that’s true or not (I suspected a girlfriend was his reason for wanting me gone in the first place), but even if it is…that’s too soon. We aren’t legally divorced. We’re not even separated in the legal sense, just the geographical sense. And he hasn’t even filed for divorce.

He says he’s waiting on the funds to do so. Never-mind the fact that he recently got a large tattoo on the back of his hand that probably didn’t come cheap. Never-mind the fact that he bragged to me in recent text messages about the painting and plumbing repairs he’s done to what was supposed to be the home we’d grow old in together and watch our babies grow up in ’til they brought their own babies home to visit…

Now, maybe I don’t have the right to be hurt. Maybe I should have seen this coming a long time ago. Maybe the roller-coaster of breakups and makeup sex (which was actually totally awesome) that comprised the years leading up to our marriage should have clued me in. Maybe his treatment of me post-nuptials should have slapped a big Duh! in my face…but it didn’t.

Now I’m alone in Arizona with two babies who are counting on me to be the equivalent of mommy and daddy to them. I’m paying for everything without his help. I can do this without him, and I can do a damned good job of it, but I’ll never understand why he wanted it that way.

In his rage during a text-argument tonight (because I admitted to being upset about his new girlfriend, and his putting other people ahead of his daughters) he pointed out all of my perceived flaws in 240 characters. He threatened to “fight tooth and nail” for custody of our beloved children.

They are not pawns to be played with. They are human beings. Neither of us own them. But as I’ve been their primary caregiver since birth, as Luna tells me all the time that she loves me and freaks out if I leave her with a sitter or a daycare until she is reassured that I will be back in a timely manner, as Freya is still young enough to need the nurturing that–let’s be honest here–women are really biologically predisposed to having (for the most part; I’ve met exceptions on both sides), I know that I’m the best custodial parent for them at this time.

Sure, when they’re preteen or teen they might be old enough and wise enough to make their own decisions about living arrangements, weighing the pros and cons, but right now a man who couldn’t be bothered to watch his own children while I pursued higher education or employment opportunities and puts electronic devices, friends, and courtesans ahead of his daughters is not the most suitable guardian.

I know I’m not a perfect person, but no one ever insinuated that I was. My flaws, however, are not to the detriment of my children. I am just human enough that they don’t put me on a pedestal and call me an angel, but I’m moral enough that I don’t go out fucking around and don’t waste money that should be spent on them buying frivolous integumentary adornments and syndicated merchandise.

I should, in all honesty, never have let him bully me out of house and home. Now he’s living the bachelor life with his best friend and their two Mollies, while I’m being a responsible parent with self-imposed curfews, no dating life, and a budget. I’m facing the terrible prospect of trying to figure out what part of the country me and the girls should reside in…alone. I’m struggling through my MA (with my two most recent grades being As, by the way) and working on PhD applications. I’m trying to do everything in my power to give my children a future far better than my own past. But I can’t give them a father who has his priorities in line, a father who wasn’t abusive to their mother, a father who kept his phallus contained in his Levis for anyone else but their mother…

I will not tell them any of this. Sure, someday they’ll learn to Google themselves and if the blog is still up they might read it, but hopefully by then he’s replaced his sexual deviancy and misaligned priorities with the kind of loving and caring paternal nature that I always wished someone had shown to me consistently throughout my own childhood.

I don’t really know what the future will bring at this point. After the divorce is finalized, my focus will still remain on the girls and their future, pursuant to which I’ll continue working on my higher education. I don’t see another man (or a woman) in my future. Maybe it’s that Bee Gees syndrome (If I can’t have you…), but I just really don’t want anyone else.

Friends and family tell me I settled for eleventh best, and that someday Mr. Right will come along. But I worry about the implications of that. Will my future lover love my daughters as much as I do, or will he see them as just another man’s brats that he doesn’t really want around but tolerates so he can bang me? What if, being a single parent, I attract a myriad of losers who use and abuse me just as much as the one I was forced to leave behind? How will I ever know if someone new loves me for me?

I know those questions should be back-burnered until I can successfully navigate this rocky, winding, mountain road I’ve gotten lost on. That sheer cliff to my right looks frightening and there are falling rocks to the left. The bridge in front of me doesn’t really seem likely to hold my weight, but it’s too late to turn back because the road behind me has started to crumble…

Trace Adkins–Love is blind and little did I know that you were just another dead-end road.

View the full blog at heartchasms.blogspot.com and like the blog on Facebook.

4 thoughts on “Fucking Frost

  1. Ah, now I know why you aren’t up at 4am. Wish I could give you a hug or two. I know how painful it is when you learn just how little the other person cares for what you thought you were trying to build with them. I have no idea what the right answer is for you and the girls but I do know that you are strong, much stronger than you give yourself credit for and you will persevere. Hopefully, in time, he will understand that the girls are really what’s most important and will do what he can to show them he loves them, ’cause I think he does, he just isn’t thinking with the right end of himself. I know you love them with every fiber of your being, never have doubted that. Take deep breaths, don’t make rash decisions, think practically. And hug the girls. Hug them when you’re hurting inside and though they won’t understand, they will help to heal you. You will be okay. You will find your road.

  2. I was/am awake. I had my phone off, but drama snuck out of the electronic devices and into my synapses. I’ll be okay eventually. Thank you for your kind words.

  3. Ashley, you are an awesome mother, don’t let anyone make you feel any differently. You are handling this entire situation with a grace I am not even sure I could pretend to have were I in your place. Remember- father’s rarely get primary custody =) And if you need anything from me, please let me know. Friends are always there for one another, regardless of distance.

  4. I feel quite lacking in the grace and aplomb department as of late, but thanks for the words of encouragement. Do you still happen to have my number? If so, text me.

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