Sunday, November 1, 2009


Six months ago I was married.  Tonight I went trick-or-treating with my ex-wife, her new husband, and our two children.  Life changes quickly.

In past years we had Halloween parties that the children still remember although they are only four and six years old.  No party this year that I know of.  Of the three of us, I was the only adult in costume.

I joined the kids and greeted my ex and her husband pleasantly.  The things we'll do for our children.  For the rest of the evening I just pretended that my ex and her husband were casual acquaintances, easy to do as I have no feelings of lost love.

I focused on the kids and joined them as they approached each house eagerly.  I made small talk with the people who had decorated their homes.  My son wanted to give me all of his candy.  My ex-wife made sure to call from the curb for the kids to say thank you at each house.  I wondered where the Unicef boxes were.

My ex-wife and her husband walked along together and I heard a familiar tone and pattern of conversation that I found artificial and an unpleasant reminder of what I had once bought into.  I worried that she doesn't have what it takes to find herself.  I worried for the kids.

It was raining hard and my daughter became cold and I gave her my Marlon Brando jacket, part of my biker costume.  She looked cute in her fancy dress and too-large motorcycle jacket.

How strange it must be for a child to have two homes.  Not uncommon, but strange, especially to someone like me who grew up confident in his family's unity. 

As we walked my son mostly stayed with me, his current alliance.  My daughter is having a harder time and went back and forth, telling her mom and me both that she loved us.  Reciting the mantra, "I love daddy and I also love mommy".  A seemingly unnecessary burden for a small child to carry.

We arrived back at my ex-wife's home.  I was not invited inside, and I got my jacket back from my daughter and dripped my way to my truck.  I drove home in rain blown horizontal by the wind. 

I had a feeling of sadness.  I wanted to be there to review the loot.  To sort out the good candy from the undesirable stuff.

I took a candy bar that my son had given me and ate it.  I hope they had fun tonight.


  1. So sad.. but makes you think... my kids are the same age (but I am still married). I see friends of mine going through this same shit. The kids "get it".

    Local Paindoc

  2. So relatable and honest. Thanks for sharing