I can feel them slipping away, gradually, and it's breaking my heart. I feel like I almost never see my girls any more and, even though I know it's not exactly true and that C's trip to Paris is partly to blame, there is some truth in it.
C left last Monday (11/4) at 5.30 am. I picked her up at the station on Thursday at 7.30 pm, we had dinner at McDonald's and the girls were both in bed by 9.45. D took them to school the next morning, but I brought them home, though I had to take C to her circus class almost at once. And I didn't see her again till Sunday evening. D picked up L at 7.30 pm and I didn't see her again till Saturday afternoon, when we went to see "Winnie the Pooh" (though I have to confess I fell asleep halfway through and somewhat "lost the plot" so to speak). L was out all day Sunday too.
Yesterday (Monday), I had to invigilate an exam, so I asked D to pick the girls up from school, except he couldn't, so it was his friend, Magali. And she didn't bring them home till 8.30 pm, by which time the mushroom pie I'd prepared (ie cooked from frozen) was inedible - burnt on top and cold. I swear, it was like I never see my girls at all, and I was miserable last night, I can tell you!
Hopefully, I'll have some time with C on Wednesday afternoon, but it's difficult. I don't have any money, and there aren't many free things to do that still appeal to the girls now. I know it's classic for dads to be the "fun" parents, but when you're no longer a couple, the injustice of that is even more obvious. I get to do all the boring stuff - laundry, homework, checking school bags, making sure everything's ready, etc. As I don't drive (totally my own fault, I know, but a fact nevertheless) I can't easily take them anywhere and oh, I don't know, I just feel that they're both slipping out of my grasp.
These two little girls mean sooooo much to me, yet we never seem to do anything fun together any more... And that's why I'm hoping that I can find enough money to take them away this summer. Right now, it seems impossible to imagine, but I'm hoping that things will have started to change and that I'll manage to do it somehow.
I know they're growing up - even my littlest hobo will be 7 in just over two weeks - and that increasing distance is normal, but this is different. This is yet more horrible fallout from separating from D: when they're with him, that means they're not with me. It's not just that they're making their own friends, it's also that they're making friends through him, so there are whole areas of their lives where I have no idea what they're doing. Yet I'm still the one who has to prepare everything, organise sleepover bags, make sure everything comes home, remember about homework etc. I'm still the one who has to "manage". And it kills me.
I want them to grow up remembering me for things other than yelling and ordering them to do things. I don't want all their memories of me to be either screeching or crying (or often both). I try so hard, I have ideas and plans, yet I never seem to get round to doing anything. Or nothing right, anyway.
Being single sucks, being a single mother sucks, being so angry and frustrated sucks. My life sucks, except for those all-too-brief and all-too-rare moments of complicity with my sweet little girls. They - and their love - make it all bearable, and worthwhile. And if I lose that, I don't know what will become of me.