Today I found myself crying.  In the car with my daughter, on the way to swim practice.

For a child who is full of fire and determination, she is a quiet one, one who doesn’t speak up and share her opinion.  This is something we’ve been working on since preschool — to “use her big voice.”

STBX has refused to take the kids to swim practice, even though he is paying nothing (I’m paying dues) and all he needs to do is drop them off and pick them up.  Last week her brother told me that he was going last behind everyone and swimming “bad” times during practice.  I asked him why he thought that. He said “I need to go to practice more.”  My daughter chimed in and said the “six year olds are beating me” and I also asked her why that was?  She said she needed to swim more.  *SIGH*  They both realize they are getting farther and farther behind.  And more and more out of shape.

In the car today, Ducky told me she asked her dad whey they were going to start going swimming again.  His answer?? “I’m not sure I’ll be taking you on MY days.” WTF.  Like I said the only thing he has to do is drop off and pick up.

This made me cry.  Here she was, trying to use her big voice.  Asking for something she WANTS to do.  She continues to ask.  He continues to deny.  She is the one with potential.  Not only does she have natural talent, she has determination, she has will.  It makes me cry just thinking about it.

She told me again after practice she was behind everyone.  And all the kids were going faster than she was.  I said to her “what should you do?”  She told me “go to practice more.”  I just told her try your best, work hard and maybe things will change.  But it breaks my heart.

STBX and his attorney are claiming I have the need to “live vicariously” through the kids’ swimming. What BS.  I had my turn 30 years ago and it took me through Division I as a varsity swimmer.  I don’t need to feel success through the kids.  I had my day.  But the kids — they have potential to be really good, even great.  Especially Ducky.

I told LOML once she was the one he needed to get his hands on to train.  She has the talent and the determination. Big Kid likes to swim, he has always liked the feel of the water.  And he swam on his own at 18 mos.   But he is losing ground and interest because he has fallen behind.

Potential used to mean have such a positive ring to it for me.  Now, I think about how I am forced to find a job, any random job one with the “greatest earning potential” (as indicated on my court order by STBX attorney).  Being forced on a career path that will be my last, due to my age.  And I see my children, with athletic potential, being crushed by the selfishness of their father.

I need a turn around.  More than that, I need to figure out how to get the kids back on track.  To experience their greatest potential.


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