I had a revelation not long ago that I wanted to share with you all.  You see, sometimes I get a little angry because I feel that my kids’ dad gets to be the “fun” parent.  All he has to do is show up for about 24 hours once every 6 weeks, take them some place that kids like to go like the movies, or Dave and Busters or whatever, take them to a restaurant and everyone seems happy.  It’s not for very long though as they usually are at the hotel by 6:30pm – mind you he isn’t even at my house to pick them up until about 1:00 or 2:00pm, which means they’ve gotten all of about 4 or 5 hours of precious time with their dad.  I usually get a message from my youngest around 8:00 or so asking to come home.  This happens every time he visits.  Sometimes it’s not just her that wants to come home.  My oldest doesn’t even want to go but feels obligated to, or perhaps it’s more of a matter of speaking up and telling his father how he REALLY feels about him that pressures him into going.  Anyway, back to my revelation.  Since my ex has been gone, my kids and I have come even closer.  Sure we have our issues and we are still healing from all the abuse, neglect and trauma that we have all endured, but I have come to a realization that has really helped me to deal with my feelings of inadequacy that I was “suffering” from.  We all know that kids don’t really appreciate all that we do for them.  And maybe they aren’t supposed to, as it’s our job as parents to do right by them.  But, not everyone seems to have the same rules.  There are those that can put in little to no effort and still have the privilege of being considered a parent.  And children’s’ minds are easily influenced and so they think the person that shows up for the good time is the “better” parent, which is extremely frustrating and hurtful to those of us that actually bust our ass and pull out our hair and get all the really “fun” responsibilities that go along with parenting….everything from the laundry and messy rooms to taking them to their appointments and social events and making sure they have everything they need to grow into healthy, happy individuals!  It’s really a big f*cking  job as those of you who actually is a parent to their child knows!  But anyway, back to my oldest – as this is who this post is really about – I realized recently that he actually chooses to spend time with me.  He comes upstairs and actually calls for me.  He talks to me about his friends, his possible plans for the weekend, the latest drama at school – whatever.  He will even hang out with me while his friends are here – they think I’m fun haha.  The point is that he wants to spend time with me.   So what if we don’t always get to go places and do things?  We have fun in our own way! And the fact that he comes and seeks out this time with me touches me so deeply.  It says so much to me without any need for words.  It brings me much comfort and joy to know that he has a desire to have this connection with me – a connection he doesn’t have with his father.  I no longer feel bothered by their “fun” weekends because I know, at the end of the day, they KNOW who they can really count on and that is more important than any amount of fun they could ever have.  It was never a competition but it is comforting to know that, on some level, they are able to decipher between the parent that does the bare minimum and the parent that will do anything for them.