That “Bridge Relationship”—About Nemo

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Sometimes a person is only in your life to move you to the next level and then they disappear.  It might hurt for a while, but it’s okay.  That was Nemo.

So I have talked about Nemo a lot in my past posts.  I call him Nemo because we met on the online dating site called “Plenty of Fish.”  I know, I know.  I’m so clever.  Anyway, I believe that Nemo was a bridge relationship.  I remember once I was talking to my best friend’s brother (whattttt?  I know).  And for being so young he was really intuitive.  My best friend told me that he said that sometimes people are just bridges to get someone out of a stage and onto the next part of their life.  And that he thinks that he was this for me.  This was yearrrss ago.  Like 5.  And I still remember that to this day.  And that’s what I think this relationship with Nemo was.  A bridge relationship for both of us.

I’m not going to lie to you.  I really thought I would be marrying this man.  Jumping to conclusions much?  Absolutely especially since I found out he didn’t want to marry again.  But that’s exactly how I felt.  I was going to marry him.  I had never felt so strongly about it before.  Clearly, I was wrong.

Why was I so sure?  Because before we even went on our first date, stuff I was insecure about…things I worried about telling him because I was sure I would scare him away…he was fine with.  He got a glimpse at my crazy life and didn’t run for the hills.  He talked me through one of the hardest things I have ever done in my life—trying to hold my best friend’s hand as she held a funeral for her infant daughter.  He was there through all of it before we even met.

And then we met, and had our first date…and I was positive.  Of course everything went wrong on every date we went on.  But it made it that much more funny.  That much better.  He did all the things that girls love.  Coming up behind you to give you a hug.  Burying his face in your hair.  He’s an amazing dad.  He took me out on incredibly sweet, thoughtful dates.  For example the museum exhibit and taking me to my very first comedy show.  This man, he had be BEFORE hello.

This was it!  I just knew it.  I knew it deep in my being.  100% for sure!  No, not quite.  We dated for about 2 months and were “official”  for about 3.  Things got shaky fast.  I’m not going to go into details….but I was a crazy person this one time.  Famous last words, right women?  In my defense, I was in the process of moving.  And I was hungry.  I feel that is a very valid reason.  Hungry goes hand and hand with angry.  “I’m sorry for what I said when I was hangry.”  People make mistakes and say stupid stuff.  Basically, I was angry because he said he was going to be back to help me paint in a couple hours.  Which turned into 4 because he wanted to nap.  I was so frustrated.  Couldn’t he see I needed his help and his napping and doing whatever else could be done later?  I needed to be out by TOMORROW!  So we argued a bit.  Eventually I apologized, because, hello…I should be.   He was helping me and I was an ass.

I thought nothing of it after that though.  I apologized right?  So it’s good.  Let me digress for a minute.  I thought I loved this man.  I still think I did.  As I was writing this, a friend, Kelly, posted a quote on Facebook that was entirely me. Of course I asked where it was from.  It’s from Sugarland- “Take me as I am.”  “I’m slow to trust but I’m quick to love.  I push too hard and I give too much. I ain’t saying I’m perfect, but I promise I’m worth it.”  Thank you Kelly for your contribution :).  And yes, I just added a smiley face to a blog post.  Get over it.  I will aslo say OMG, and LOL.  Hope you are ready for that.  Anyway…

I told Nemo that I loved him about a month before this move.  Because I fall quickly and I fall hard.  I still thought everything was okay.  It was two weeks later and it was going to be the first time that we hung out after the move.  Except he was running late.  Then he called.  And said those words I hate.  “We need to talk.”  Fuck.  Sorry.  But fuck.  He told me that since the “hangry incident” he saw me differently.  That he doesn’t love me, that he doesn’t think he ever did.  Ouch.  Nemo has a muddled past.  So we talked for a while.  And I thought that me acting anything like his ex was making him run.  He agreed.  We made up and he came to hang out.  He kept saying he was sorry and what not.  But I was so broken.  So hurt.

I thought eventually it would go away.  But when people say things I believe them.  He didn’t love me.  I stopped saying it to see if he would initiate it.  I stopped, and so did he.  Damn.  So one night after arguing about him not believing in the Sensory Processing Disorder my son is diagnosed with, I said those words.  “We need to talk.”  I told him it had been bugging me since he said it.  He said he doesn’t think he does.  I said do you ever see yourself loving anyone?  Is this something I was going to be waiting for that never happened?  He said he doesn’t think he believes in it anymore.  He brought up moving in together once upon a time.  He said that there were qualities in me that changed his mind about me, my defensiveness.  And that because of it, he could never see himself moving in with me or anything of that type.  He said he made up his mind…it’s over.

Now I can tell you even writing this I’m getting pissed.  There was an arrogance and assyness quality to how he did it.  But it’s okay.  Because I realized he was a bridge relationship.  It was a relationship that took me to the next level of my life.  I think I might have been that for him too.  This relationship made me realize what I want and what I don’t.  What I will and won’t compromise on.  What I have confidence in and what I need to work on.  Though I don’t plan on changing completely, I realized JUST how defensive I am about everything.  I am working on it.  We haven’t really talked since.  It kind of hurts, but at the same time it’s probably better this way.  No matter how much of yourself you give, you cannot make someone feel something they don’t.  I need someone that accepts my flaws and doesn’t throw me to the wayside just because I made a mistake.  I can’t live in fear of that.  I need to be secure enough in a relationship to know that I can make mistakes and we can be better and grow stronger moving forward.

As for him, I do think he will find love that makes him realize he does believe in it.  I really hope he does find that.  He isn’t a bad guy, he deserves it.  I think he will find that person that he wants to work things out with when the road is bumpy.  As for me, I need to have fun and live life.  If that means dating again, then it’s dating again.  So soon?  It was only a few weeks ago!  So?  Dating is fun.  Friends are fun.  I’m going to do things and be around people that are fun.  This one short relationship has opened up my eyes to so much.  Things people have told me over and over again have finally clicked.  This is my bridge relationship.  It was good while it lasted, and I’m better because of it.

Photo provided by Jake Melera on stocksnap.io

Special needs parents- it’s okay to mourn


Attention special needs parents! It’s time for you to mourn the loss of your traditional ideas of raising a child. How dare you?! How dare you say that? Mourn what? My child is a beautiful gift! And he/she is. I’m not saying otherwise. What I am saying is…it’s okay to mourn the life you wanted for your child before you knew about his/her special needs.

My son has sensory processing disorder. It means that with all the senses in our crazy world, his brain doesn’t know how to process them. He gets overly excited, can run around crazily or just start crying. He doesn’t know how to handle it and could not excel in his regular preschool class. He is in a special education class. This does not define him, it’s just what he needs to help him deal with everyday life.

So I understand. No matter what makes your child a little different, I’m here to tell you it’s okay to mourn. Maybe mourn is a bit extreme for you, but have a good cry. And you will probably feel much better when you do. I used to feel so guilty for thinking that. But I realized I don’t need to. It wasn’t that I wished for a different child. Keegan is amazingly sweet and smart and if he was nuero-typical he might not be. I love exactly who Keegan is. All of him. But I felt guilty for feeling sad. I felt sad for the things that are pretty much a given to typical kids, that I was no longer sure was going to be possible. Of course I was going to push and do everything possible to get him into all the things I was worried about. But I also don’t want to try to make him something he’s not.

You don’t realize all the things you worry about as a parent of a child limited physically or mentally, things that are normal to most children. Will they ever be mainstreamed in school? Will they be able to walk? Sports? College? Living on their own? Life without occupational therapy? Boyfriend/girlfriend? Kids? Marriage? Will they even want these things?

Mourn it out.  It’s not selfish. It’s actually selfless. To be worried about your children and to want more for them, is selfless. What will my child be able to do? Typical children at least get the opportunity to do everything that follows the “normal social path.” But the future of our kids is unknown. You should not feel bad for being sad about what your child might be missing out on. What I have learned though is that they don’t know what they are missing out on. Or they may know and feel like they aren’t missing out at all. We just don’t know.

I think that is the hardest part. Not knowing. The hardest struggle is being a “typical” person with a special needs child. Because you literally don’t know how to help. You don’t know how they feel, or what their concerns are. You don’t know if your pushing them is helping or hurting. It is a little upsetting when you realize that you have to have people that don’t even know your child, teach you how to help them. Like why can’t I figure out how to help him? You just don’t know all the answers. Accepting help from someone that is a professional doesn’t make you any less of a parent. Not knowing the answers doesn’t either. New things pop into my head all the time where I wonder “is Keegan even going to want to do that in the future?” For example, even today I wondered if throwing a big 5th birthday party is even a good idea. Is that something he can handle? All the people on top of the noise and overload of wherever we have it? Should I do something different? Nemo invited us to Halloweekends at Cedar Point, would Keegan even enjoy it? People popping out to scare us? I think not, but it’s always different with him.

Trust me guys, you aren’t the only ones that are 95% sure you are royally screwing your kids up. You aren’t the only ones that question all of your actions. And P.S….it’s okay to feel a little bad for yourself too. Shhh…I won’t tell. It is exhausting. You have to be the advocate for your child for a long time. For some people, it’s a lifetime.
But because of all these uncertainties every accomplishment is a huge win! You take a lot less for granted. Of course we are strong boisterous fans of our amazing kids! Just get that cry out and as Felipe (Bye Felipe!) from my job says….truck forward!

Image courtesy of David Castillo Dominici at FreeDigitalPhotos.net