My child’s father married his second wife today. Good for him; I wish them all the best while at the same time I’m curious how many lessons he actually learned from marriage and divorce the first time around.
Although the logistics of child pick up and drop off were discussed, no one bothered to mention how—or if—I should look into proper attire for the daughter of the groom. But I know my child, and a quick costume change under pressure was the recipe for a meltdown. Taking matters into my own hands, I ran a couple too-casual options passed her dad, then at the last minute decided to put her in a dress I bought in December with the intention of getting pictures made. I’m glad the still-new shoes still fit.
In other news, although not entirely unrelated, I mowed by lawn. The ex- had been paying a lawn service until a couple months ago. This is on top of child support and against my insistence I could take care of it myself. Of course, he knew “take care of it myself” meant “buy a couple machines and do it myself”. The back-and-forth ended with his assertion that a) he didn’t want me to juggle one more thing while I could/should otherwise be tending to our child and b) since the plan was to sell the house ASAP, it needed to look nice and he did not expect me to keep it up properly.
There was only slight aggravation when, prior to my knowledge that his wedding was today, the clover overgrowth was quite unsightly in the middle of February. Only when the scheduling of the child-shuffle was discussed did the picture become clear: he was severing any non-mandatory commitments on my behalf in anticipation of wife number two.
As I said, I originally told him I’d take care of it so it is no issue, never mind the absence of any notice. I’ll try not to waste too much mental energy on the psychoanalytical implications of lawn care cowardice.
In any case, in the last year and a half I have discovered that it is difficult to care for a house when you don’t care for the house. And the greater problem is that, never mind the market, no one wants to buy a house that looks as if no one cares about it. I’ve gone through fluctuations of caring and not caring, as I've struggled to “stage” the house for sale and make it look loved when it clearly was not. This house is about 900 square feet larger than I need with a mortgage to match. I have moved out of the master bedroom, which takes up half the upstairs, and staged it with furniture from yard sales repainted in a moment of expressive fervor—but I don’t sleep in there and I’ve closed off the vents to reduce energy costs. I am most proud of my own bedroom, decorated in shades of soft sage and cream and resembles a garden room. So there has been staggered progressive advancement toward making this house my home, while outside, I remained surrounded by a grassy moat which was still governed by my ex…
Today I mowed my lawn. Trimmed and edged it too.
The untended vacant lot I call my backyard.
That's my new friend, Red.