Didn’t sleep well last night. Not because of the whole rant thing I had yesterday, I’ve gotten over that, but because of other problems in life right now. My wife is going through a period of self-analysis right now and has talked about it on her blog, which is good, but the discussion does leave me feeling a little bad like I haven’t done enough to support her or something. She’s quite emphatic that I’m doing more than my share, but I can’t help but feel bad that she feels like she has to change because Courtney and I seem to be incapable or don’t wish to. People should change because they want to, not because they feel that they have to in order to be with someone they care about. I’ll be spending time reflecting on what I should be doing differently.
I’m at a loss on what to do about Courtney and her habit of ignoring big school projects until it’s a crisis. Anne gets frustrated with her because we’ve been over these things time and again with Court. I don’t get as angry because I’m also ADD and I can see from where I’m standing how I would have probably failed in the same way when I was a kid. Difference being that my parents didn’t know I was ADD and the family as a whole was so busy just making it day-to-day that they didn’t keep up with me on whether or not I was doing my homework the way I try to do with Courtney.
Note: That is in no way a slam on my parents.
I can’t be doing much better because even with trying to keep on her about it she still manages to forget about big projects until two days before they are due. I had dreams all last night where Courtney was doing the teen-aged angst thing and defying me and I kept escalating her punishment until, finally, she was grounded from everything for the next year and a half. How stupid is that?
Anne is talking on her blog about giving up on the idea of having a baby and part of that is my fault. She’s right in that I never wanted to have kids. I grew up being reminded constantly of how irresponsible I am and I realize my own selfish tendencies so I’ve never really thought I was much in the way of father material. My brother would probably tell you outright that I’m not much of a father, but my brother has always taken the tough-love approach of hoping to shape me into a better person. I know Anne wants to have a baby with me and there’s a part of me that really wishes I could say the idea is exciting and something I really want too. The best I can manage right now is that I am willing to take on another child. How self-centered is that? Deep down, no, I don’t want another kid. I can’t seem to get things right with the kid I already have, why the hell would I want to risk screwing up another life? Parenthood for me is scary and confusing. I have a hard enough time not allowing myself turn into a total asshole, let alone any kids I might have.
Anne wants to be a mother as well as a step-mother, though. I want Anne to be happy. I’ve managed not to be a total screwup with Courtney so I figure I should be able to handle another kid without too much trouble and it’s important to Anne. There would be the fact that I would be there at the start and would have more time to get things right. Anne wants me to be excited about the idea, but I just can’t. It’s too scary. I’m willing to do it and I know I would love the child the same way I do Courtney and I would do my best the best way I know how and things would probably be OK.
As much as I didn’t want kids, Courtney is arguably one of the best things that has ever happened to me. Anne would be one of the other best things. If I am at all a better person today than I was just a year ago, let alone 5 or 10 or 20 years ago, a good part of the credit would go to Anne and Courtney. They both make me want to be a better person. I have lost 33 and a half pounds because I need to be healthier so I can stick around and take care of them. I am type-two diabetic because I am too damned fat and I wouldn’t have had a clue had I not gone to the doctor’s for a physical and that wouldn’t have happened if I were still single and Courtney still lived with her mom. I gave up drinking Coca-Cola Classic, the company’s stock fell 20 points on the news alone, because I needed to be healthier for them. For 20 years of my life I swore up and down that I would never be caught DEAD drinking diet cola.
Shit, due to money problems this month, I’m down to one diet cola a day at work with lunch.
Every good change in the last three years has been something I wanted to do because of them, not because I felt I had to, but because I wanted to. So why can’t I be excited about the idea of having another kid? Why can’t I figure out how to best help my daughter get her shit together? That’s why I slept shitty last night. That’s also why I’m going to be late to work this morning.
Oh well, another day, another chance to improve.