He was always happy, cool, gentle of spirit, quiet by nature but powerful in voice (some of which he hasn't fully discovered).
Poor child suffered early on with a clueless single mom who had free reign to dress him as I wished. He is terrified of these photos but I hope he understands, none of this was his fault. He was a victim of my need to surround myself with "awwwww, ain't he cute" moments. I didn't realize how devastating this could have been to his manly development. Thank goodness he made it through without any lingering effects or propensities to dress in bow ties.
I took him out in public like this:
Clearly, I had some sort of disturbing fascination with all things Orville Redebacherish.
I'm sorry little buddy. I didn't know, really I didn't. But gosh darn, awwwwww, ain't he cute?
Back to the story. I seem to always be ahead of the trends, like the Barbara Mandel song inferring she was country when country wasn't cool. I had a baby daddy before baby daddy's were all the rage. The young man from the bar became my boyfriend. We hung out in my sparse apartment because it was generally clean. This was a sharp contrast to his sparse apartment which was generally disgusting, like you're afraid to use the restroom kind of dirty. But the guy was cool, quietly intellectual, musically inspiring and sensitive. He listened to me and cared about the random thoughts of an early twenties mess of a girl.
I suppose it was effortless for him to listen to me when he was equally as troubled and unsure of the direction his life would take. He was also easily taken advantage of in the sense that he didn't bother to ask me if I had birth control measures in place. I'm sure he assumed I did. He never saw it coming or had any notion that at that time in my life, I was singularly focused on having a baby and he was to be the lucky sperm donor.
When I informed him of my pregnancy after three months of dating, I couched it in a way to clearly give him the option of staying or leaving, with a subtly, ever so deftly implied preference for him to go. We had only been "playing" real life for those three months, like when you were little and you pretended to have a job and babies. He wasn't ready to be ushered away from that superficial world, kicking and screaming into a life of real responsibility. I knew it wasn't in his plan and I was grateful that he let go without much fuss or fight.
With pressure from his ragingly oppressive mother, he did enter back into our lives after #1Son was born. We even attempted a reconciliation of our relationship but it was not meant to be. I had the inner stirrings of my now well honed mother bear instincts manifesting in me and he still wasn't quite ready to be a dad, outside of his vague impersonation. I didn't ask for money, I didn't ask for help in any way really. All I asked was that he be all in or all out. I didn't want to raise my child with a half committed father figure skipping in and out at his leisure. The final decision was mutually transparent. Baby daddy out.
Believe it or not, I consider him one of the good guys. Like a parent who gives up their child for adoption because they want a better life for them, he did the right thing by me. He knew I had it under control and he was afraid he would mess something up. He gave me this child who carries his gentle traits, musical ear, tall stature, wicked sense of humor and even the interesting facial structure and chiseled chin that drew me to him from the beginning.
(To be continued......)