Father’s Day + Co-Parenting.

Two years seems like yesterday and ten years ago all at once.

I don’t think I ever told you, but one of the reasons I first fell in love with you ten years ago was seeing you with your two best friends’ kiddos—how much you mutually loved one another, their shrieks and squeals as you’d throw them into the air “ONE more time.” I knew then how amazing of a father you’d be one day and even then, I looked forward to the day we’d bring home our own children.

There’s not a second that goes by that I regret meeting, loving, and marrying you—not one. When it’s all said and done and if I’m being honest, you are still one of the best men and best dads I’ve ever known. You’re an amazing father and I am so grateful every day for you. In the midst of the craziness of raising two young kids and the marathon that has been the final transition of our “marital” life, I don’t say it enough.

Our kids adore the ground you walk on—you are their best friend, superhero, and fixer. I know they are yours too. As they’ve been for me, I know it has been them that have seen you through every curve-ball these past two years too. The solid foundation that permitted your own unbecoming to become—and trust in the cycle of life transitions to know all the turmoil was only temporary.

We didn’t love ourselves enough at the time to be able to love one another well enough to make our relationship work the way our 24-and-27-year old selves once hoped for, but we’ve been logistical life partners since the day we met. In many ways, we continue to be, and I couldn’t imagine a better co-parenting partner than you.

It’s taken a long time to feel like myself again—but the one thing I never doubted or had to work my way through was my trust in your parenting, your love for our kids, and our ability to co-parent. It has been my saving grace.

In life and as adults, we no longer get report cards or mentors telling us we’re on the right path, but there are always a few defining moments that let you know.

Back in October and as the Judge just agreed to our divorce, the lawyer turned around to a court room full of divorcing couples stating that: “I just have to say this because I hope it helps some of you in this room today. In all my years of doing this, I’ve never once seen a couple handle their divorce or protect their children in this process as well as these two have. Nothing matters more than your children.” I still think about that moment a lot.

Every night before bed I ask Charley what she’s grateful for and every night amidst many varying things, such as her beloved imaginary “rainbow house,” she always first says:  I’m grateful for my Mommy, Daddy, Teddy, Kaiah and Logie, Siobhan (Sparky) and Cash. This nightly ritual and her words filled with sweet innocence tell me everything I need to know about the job we’re doing, how well we’ve navigated these really, really tough transitions to be the best parents we could be despite the storms surrounding us and unknown road(s) ahead. I am so proud of you, so proud of us—and so grateful. And I need you to know that.

These past few months have been bittersweet as I remember the love I felt this moment 10 years ago, the brokenness I felt this moment 2 years ago—and the love I now feel again in this new moment. The beauty of life cycles if you have the patience to trust in them.

I will always love you with all of my heart, you will always be the (rockstar) dad of the two most important people in my life. There will never be a second where I am not grateful for everything, even the hardest days, since it is the accumulation of all of our days that led us to where we are today, permitting us to fully embrace a healthy co-parent relationship and a renewed friendship, with the freedom for us both to go find and/or love the people who make our hearts feel at home.

I hope you celebrate this weekend and bask in the life + love that are our two children and know how much you are loved + appreciated today, and every day.

Happy Father’s Day, B, and thank you.

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