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Friday, November 23, 2012

Letting go and forgiving!

Every day of November I am writing what I am thankful or grateful for on my facebook page.  I've written some serious ones, some offbeat ones and just some like "I am thankful for coffee!".  This was my post today:

"Today I am having a hard time deciding if I just want to be "silly" or be open in my gratitude share. Open means that I am gonna have to address some of my emotions later on, but today, that needs to be, I guess. I am grateful for a chance to live life and be a part of my childrens lives, and that includes ALL of my children, blood or not. Sometimes, people are unable, for whatever reason, to jump...
into the emotions that are part of being a parent. It's not that they don't love or want to be a part of their life, it's that they simply don't know how. Fear may enter into it, or a feeling of inadequacy. My dad, Herb was like that, he would step into my life (and my sisters) occassionally, long enough to cause chaos, then he'd step out. I almost wish he'd have just stayed away. I spent a lot of years wondering what I did wrong. It has taken a lot of soul searching to realize it wasn't me. I do have some good memories, and today I choose to hold them close and let the bad memories, and pain be released. I am blessed to have a new dad, Richard Eccleston and 2 great brothers, Brad Eccleston and Jeff Eccleston. Today, I pray that my children are able to find peace knowing that their dad, Bob, truly loved them, but he just didn't know how to show it. Please keep your good memories close and set the bad memories and pain free."
My oldest daughters, Kaitlyn and Michelle, along with their half-brother and sister, Chad and Barbi, got together today to spread their father's ashes and say goodbye.  Bob, my ex, was found dead in his RV a year ago Thanksgiving day.  He was not much of a father to any of them.  He loved them, but for whatever reason, was unable to really show it, or communicate it to them.  My daughters have both had issues with their grief, feeling anger and remorse that they should have tried harder, etc.  When Chad and Barbi got to our house today, we talked about where to spread Bob's ashes, etc.  The thing is, Bob really didn't have any favorite places. So, Kaitlyn and I went a few days ago and I showed her where his mom, dad and younger sister were buried.  They also decided to travel up to one of the prairies where Chad remember he, his dad and I going to cut firewood.  They took the time to have lunch and from what I hear, they laughed, cried, and hugged each other.  The best part?  I got hugs too, and so did Steve and Lyndsey.
I didn't have much contact with my ex after we divorced, except for trying to claim the child support.  I was lucky to be Chad and Barbi's stepmom and after their dad and I divorced, we stayed close.  As a matter of fact, I am close to their mom Peggy, Bob's first ex-wife. Barbi's little boys even call Steve and I "Grandpa and Grandpa", even though we don't see them often (they live 5 hours away).  Steve had a time of adjustment when we got married, accepting the relationship we have.  In his mind, the ex-wives really shouldn't be close.  When Peggy came to visit and hugged Steve, I thought his jaw was gonna hit the ground.  He has come around tho, and we all get along good and communicate via facebook, etc.  Chad and Barbi even call Lyndsey their little sister, even though there is absolutely no relationship, via step, blood, half, etc. there.  I do admit to crying when Bob passed, because of the kids' loss.  I was also mad at him, for not trying harder.  It's hard to admit, I knew in my heart he wasn't gonna be the best dad when we got married, but I guess I hoped he'd change, just like I hoped my own dad would change.  On a positive note, Chad is an excellent dad to his three little boys (4 and under-yikes), learning what not to do.
We got pictures... from left to right, myself, Steve, Kaitlyn, Barbi, Chad, Michelle and Lyndsey!

Left to right, Lyndsey, Chad, Barbi, Justin (Kaitlyn's hubby), Kaitlyn, Michelle and Taylor (Michelle's boyfriend) and Mason on the bottom.  I  think Chad intimidates Lyndsey a lil' bit!  Chad really looks like his dad, except he's a lot taller (Bob was 5'8").  It's disconcerting at times!

We got some pictures and hugs and I think it was good for all the kids to have the opportunity to spend time together.  I am thrilled to have the opportunity to be a part of their lives.


  1. You are such a wise woman! All of your family members (extended, present, in-laws, step-kids, etc.) would benefit by truly hearing what you have said.

    We all have baggage which much of the time makes us who we are. (And which leaves room for improvement!) But if we have the gumption (as you do) to let go and forgive (I know, so hard, so hard) our lives would be so much better.

    I think some people don't want to let go and forgive because they are familiar with their situation (even if it's bad) and are frightened of change. But bottom line, we have so much love and support to get from one another if only we CAN let go and forgive.

    A really well-thought out and put together post, Ruth. Food for thought. Amen!

  2. You are amazing, and have done your kids a huge favor and taught a lesson by being forgiving and letting go. You are making the most of the many forms of family you have and making it work where so many others would let their family become splintered, you rock Ruth!