Friday, September 26, 2008

Gains and Losses

Coming back from dance class last night, Daughter pointed to a house several blocks from ours and noted that one of her friends is soon moving into it. That's good news for Daughter because I'd be willing to call that distance "walking distance." Yes, she'd be permitted at the ripe old age of 10 to walk all of a quarter-mile to visit a friend.

[Wait a minute. I just realized it's pretty far. Like really far. Yes, that paranoid voice inside my head is countering one of the premises of this post. I guess I'll have to instead think of it as good news for me that I won't have far to take her there and back. Yes, that is the new good news part of the post.]

Daughter's [and my] gain is directly attributed to someone else's loss. In this case, there are lots of people losing. There is the friend's mother, who can not afford to pay for the house they currently own because she and her husband are divorcing. There is the friend's half-brother and half-sister, just 6 and 4 years old, who have been watching their parents' marriage crumble. There is her friend, who sees, perhaps more vividly, what is happening to her mother and her stepfather.

Just another entry on the red side of the ledger, right? Just further evidence of the pattern that is currently swirling around my sphere, right? I suppose.

Why is it I fail to mention the stepfather and what he must be going through? Because I can't summon up any sympathy for the man. The mother is a firefighter. A drop-dead gorgeous firefighter, by the by. Her husband retired as a firefighter not that long ago. Before he retired, he was having a hot-and-heavy affair with a fellow firefighter. [Not a fellow as in a man.]

That's not something you can contain. The mother has far too many friends in the department. In her mind, it's bad enough when your spouse steps out on you, but with someone from your former firehouse?

She's on the good side of things at this point, the mother. She's philosophical about her soon-to-be-ex. "At least he gave me two beautiful children." We have to be philosophical, right? How else are we going to be there for our children?

2 comments:

Amanda said...

Sheesh. Life, so hard sometimes to keep a hold on the gains, when the losses are so glaring. But walking to a friend's house? Shoowee, doesn't get much sweeter than that!

D... said...

Gosh. While I'm glad your daughter will be within walking distance to a friend (so wish I had that luxury), I'm sad about the friend's mom. It's hard being a single mom. And what a jerk of a husband, huh? She seems like she's in a good place right now. That's going to help the kids tremendously.

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