The Ghost of Christmas Past

Hey there ya’ll! I know, I know, where have I been? I’ve been here. Just haven’t felt like writing, honestly. Things have been interesting around here, to say the least. But really, aren’t they always? Also, interesting doesn’t always equal good.

I’ve got some changes in the works, but they’ll probably be moving a little slower than I wanted, so I’m going to keep writing here for the time being. But hopefully sooner rather than later, I’m planning to move to a shiny new site. Hooray!

Back to Christmas. Here’s the story of ours.

Since my divorce, we generally do some variation of the same thing at Christmas. Girls are always with me on Christmas Eve. Even though this means I’m always responsible for the “big” gifts for the girls, I’m good with this. I love Christmas Eve, it’s my favorite. This Christmas Eve was a little different, since my brother went to visit his fiance in Canada, it was just me, my mom, the bf, and the girls. We had a good time. Ate pizza, played games, watched A Christmas Story, drank nog. Same stuff we normally do, just on a smaller scale.

On Christmas morning, the plan was the the ex’s sister would pick up the girls on her way to her parents’ house. The girls would spend Christmas day with their dad and their other grandparents. The Mama and I always go to a movie on Christmas day, which we had planned to do this year as well. We were going to pick up the girls after the movie and dinner.

Girls wake up super early, which was good, I didn’t want to have to rush for them to get ready to go. We open gifts, eat breakfast, I send M to the shower. I was wondering why I had not heard from their aunt, so I called her to see if they had left. She had. But she had news.

News that really didn’t come as a shock to anyone. The ex was in jail. For a DUI on Christmas eve. Now I had a decision to make. Do I tell the kids or make something up?

Already on V’s birthday, I had made up a story of why her dad never called. I can’t even remember what I said. He wasn’t getting a signal or something like that. Truth? No one new where he was. He was supposed to show up after school to take the girls for ice cream. Never showed. So I lied. To spare V’s feelings.

But this time? I didn’t feel like lying. Yes, I knew this had the potential to ruin Christmas. But you know what? He doesn’t deserve for me to lie for him anymore. And the girls deserve to know the truth.

So, on Christmas morning, I sat my beautiful daughters down and told them they would not be seeing their father today. Because he was in jail. For driving after he had been drinking.

Neither girl cried. They didn’t really ask any questions. Only one comment from M. “Dad spends all his money on drinking, that’s why he doesn’t help take care of us.” Not a question. A statement. A fact. The truth.

I managed to salvage visits with the grandparents. The mama and I went to the movie. I highly recommend The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo if you haven’t seen it. We picked the girls up. Went to dinner. Came home. Everyone seemed happy.

I’m still not sure how affected they are by all of this. Neither one has asked about him (he’s still in jail by the way). Kudos to his mom for leaving him there.

I don’t think Christmas was ruined. At least I hope not. I don’t want their ghost of Christmas past to be, “that one where Dad went to jail.”

Here’s hoping there are no ghosts of Christmas future.