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Too much on his plate

November 7, 2008

Since the Judge ordered Rooferman to attempt to see his daughter 3x a week now, I got a call from His Deadbeatness to set up last night’s visitation. He was as sweet as pie to the Judge, professing he ‘hadn’t seen his daughter in a long time, and that’s all he wanted to do.”

So I requested he actually show up on Sundays, and that he see LB for 3 hours on Tuesday and Thursday. Since I don’t have him on the daycare pick-up list anymore, I told him I could pick her up and drop her off at his house. He told me he wouldn’t be there until 5:30 pm. I said “LB’s daycare closes at 5:00, so I usually pick her up at 4:30.” Like he cared.

So I brought LB back to my office for an hour, which was fine because I work in education, and its a kid-friendly environment where everyone lavishes her with attention. Afterwards, I drive to Rooferman’s house, and low-and behold he’s not there. He calls and says he’s running late, but to “hang tight” until he gets there.

Sigh. Deja vu.

He pulls up in his shop truck, and out pour 3 little girls, Blondie and himself. I extract LB from her carseat and start ushering her up the hill. Then I notice Blondie is crying. Rooferman wraps her in his construction-worker embrace. I stand awkwardly with our daughter, waiting for her dad to acknowledge her presence. Finally he says hi to LB and with some prodding, she goes to hug him. He looks at me and says shortly, “What time?”

“7:30.”

“Judge said bedtime.”

“No, he said 30 minutes before bedtime. She goes to bed at 8:00 pm.”

He and Blondie give me the look of death, and he says “Well we’re running a little late, so how about 8?”

This is NOT happening. After all the times I’ve been flexible and let him get away with showing up late, or switching days, or bailing completely and covering for him, I have no tolerance anymore. I tell them I’m just going to the gym and I will be back in 2 hours. Next time he can pick her up from daycare and have a full 3 hours.

I’m sure after I left he and Blondie had a “curse the ex” party, because LB came home saying “F-U.” Apparently that’s what “daddy says.” Great. Blondie was still crying, and even Rooferman’s eyes looked wet when I returned. Kids were strewn about the living room, watching TV. Blondie kept calling more adults in to say goodbye to LB. I kept thinking, how many people live here?  I decided it was Blondie’s sister and her boyfriend, because she told LB to call them “Aunt and Uncle.”

Sigh.

Who knows what drama was plaguing their lives. But its obvious that Rooferman and Blondie are struggling and overwhelmed. I wonder how much they have on their plate right now. How many people they are responsible for? How far behind they are on rent? How many jobs does Rooferman have lined up in our sad-ass economy?

My friend who works at the county, said that last year over 200 building permit applications were submitted. This year, there’s been less than 75. How does that translate to roofing jobs? As you drive through the county, you can see construction sites that are like ghost towns; half-built grocery stores without windows or paved parking lots, homes without siding, still wrapped in Tyvec. You can walk through my neighborhood at Three Springs, and inside the office buildings you can see insulation still covering the walls. No businesses have shown interest in moving in, so why finish the job?

Winter is coming. We’ve already had snow. I know how hard its going to be on Rooferman. I remember the frostbitten fingers, the frozen shingles, the dangerous, icy roofs. There’s a reason why roofing is in the top ten most deadly jobs. The first winter I was with him, I came home to him slugging off a bottle of tequila. Earlier he had watched a man slip off a 3-story roof and impale himself on the scaffolding below.

I really don’t see how he’s going to be able to follow the Judge’s orders. I’m pretty sure both he and Blondie hate my guts right now, adding more stress to their lives. I actually feel kind of sorry for them. I’m also shocked how devoted and involved Rooferman is to his new life. Its like he’s wiped the slate clean and created a new identity for himself.

Mostly, I’m just relieved my that’s not my life anymore. Wow, do I sound like a heartless bitch or what?

22 Comments leave one →
  1. November 7, 2008 11:23 am

    Seems like the best advice Rooferman could get right now is “Don’t get Blondie pregnant.”

    It breaks my heart to read your post.

    Like

  2. November 7, 2008 11:37 am

    No, you aren’t a heartless bitch. WTF? Of Course you’re glad it’s not your life. I mean, please tell me you’re glad you don’t have my life either. It’s not heartless to be grateful for what good fortune you have.

    Like

  3. November 7, 2008 11:51 am

    You don’t sound heartless at all. The fact that you can even find enough compassion to feel a little bit sorry for them is big. Wow. Drama drama!

    Like

  4. November 7, 2008 12:00 pm

    “Mostly, I’m just relieved my that’s not my life anymore.”

    I know the feeling exactly. And no, nothing about that makes you a bitch.

    Like

  5. November 7, 2008 12:26 pm

    Elly- A true Aries reaction to my Piscean sympathy 🙂 Thanks for setting me straight ladies.

    Like

  6. November 7, 2008 12:57 pm

    I got stressed out just reading this. Drama is definitely the word of the day for Rooferman and Blondie.

    I’m so nosy, I’d totally want to know what’s going on to make them cry. And I’d do whatever I could to find out. I might just start dialing people up in Durango right now.

    Like

  7. November 7, 2008 1:38 pm

    Not heartless at all! As hard as things are, it gives you the perspective of what could be worse.

    Like

  8. November 7, 2008 2:18 pm

    you aren’t heartless, in fact from reading your post you come across as being empathetic to his pathetic. I’m sorry you are dealing with his crap (and Blondies’s, she sure sounds like a winner…)

    Like

  9. November 7, 2008 2:29 pm

    It doesn’t sound heartless, it sounds very, very positive. the fact htta you are able to feel some sort of empathy despite the fear and anger is amazing; you embody everything I want to be.

    Like

  10. November 7, 2008 3:54 pm

    I hope LB weathers this ok….I am so impressed with you, this is something I could never have dealt with, and even more impressed you can feel for him despite all the garbage he puts you through…hope LB stops cursing soon!

    Like

  11. laurakim123 permalink
    November 7, 2008 9:50 pm

    Its not heartless at all!!

    WELL DONE for standing by the 19h30 rule!!!! They both need to know that there are boundaries that they HAVE to play in!!!

    And if he cant see LB right now when he is supposed to well then thats how it will be!

    Like

  12. Shiona permalink
    November 7, 2008 11:53 pm

    I did not get the heartless vibe either. Construction is suffering and has been for a while. No new houses, no permits. The last time I was in Vegas even those big construction jobs for high rises were gone. The workers were talking about going to Canada to get work. And standing up to him about the hours was a great move and it’s not your life. Hope LB stops cursing soon

    Like

  13. November 8, 2008 12:49 pm

    It’s amazing you have empathy for this man and his situation considering the stuff he has put you and your daughter through. Your daughter is lucky to have a mom that is going to show her how to be open hearted by example. No matter what he is going through, it is up to him to do his part, I am sure there are days you wish you could be by yourself for a few minutes and don’t have that luxury — so the least he can do is stick to what the agreement is and wipe some of the slate clean with you and your daughter too.

    Like

  14. lilcyndiluwho permalink
    November 8, 2008 11:24 pm

    Not heartless at all. And I 100% relate to the thank God it’s not my life anymore.

    Like

  15. November 9, 2008 9:27 am

    Just found your blog through Rocky Mt. Moms…… I enjoyed this narrative immensely, as I think it’s something so many can relate to.
    I just watched my best friend go through a divorce, and now so much ugliness, just like yours. It breaks my heart.
    Kids survive. They always do.
    Peace…..

    Like

  16. littlemansmom permalink
    November 9, 2008 10:25 am

    I don’t think it sounds heartless at all…I think it sounds true and from the heart. Really, you need to be concerned about you and your littleone. He is not your responsibility, nor is his choices.

    I’m relieved it’s not your life either…and I’m proud of you for realizing it and standing strong.

    GREAT BIG HUGS!!!!!!!!!!!

    Like

  17. November 9, 2008 9:38 pm

    You’re not heartless, you care about your daughter more than anything – he clearly does not.

    Damn it. Men.

    Like

  18. November 10, 2008 12:41 am

    Your a great writer….with a big heart for her daughter. Even if you were a bitch in Blondie’s eyes who the F cares, right? 🙂

    Like

  19. underthebigbluesky permalink
    November 10, 2008 1:32 am

    Uggh, so many times do we go through that I can’t see them or I’m running four hours late.

    What is so nice is that you can still have compassion through all the $#@(.

    I think you are so much more than heartless. Your heart sounds full.

    Like

  20. November 13, 2008 9:19 am

    I agree with the others, it doesn’t sound heartless at all. I’m impressed that you can show so much empathy for someone who has caused you and your baby so much pain. Hang in there…and thank you for sharing!

    Like

Trackbacks

  1. Blondie « Cost of Living
  2. Update on Roofie « Cost of Living

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