Bleurgh.

January 16, 2007

2 slices of toast with bramble jelly.
7 wholemeal crackerswith 4 slices of cheese.
2 bowls of beef and bean hotpot.
3 homemade biscuits.
3 digestives.
1 chicken kiev.
2 scoops of mango sorbet.

Not a hideous day as far as food goes, and I shall go to bed soon in order to stop myself eating any more.

It hasn’t been the best of days in other terms. I did the things I was meant to do, so fairly productive, but my head has been quite cloudy. Ella has been away for a few days, 2 nights with her dad and 2 nights with her grandma, I picked her up just before teatime today.

She was full of smiles and tales of what she’s been up to when I got there, but was upset when she got home, and wanted her daddy. She asked for him various times tonight, which isn’t a great surprise, but always a bit galling. She hasn’t seen me since Friday lunchtime and doesn’t appear bothered at all. I know that she loves me, and it isn’t necessarily the fact that she isn’t thrilled to see me that upsets me. It is more that I feel guilty that she doesn’t spend more time with her father.

He lives the other side of Yorkshire, and works shifts that mean it would be impossible for him to see her through the week. Before we moved away from the area he lives in, he used to see her a couple of times through the week, but never took full advantage of living round the corner and being able to see her any time. It has been a year since I left, and in that time he has not spent more than 3 days at a time with her, and has sometimes gone 3 weeks without seeing her.

I sent him a text earlier to let him know that we will probably be going away for a week in the summer, and that I would want to have her the weekends either side of that week as a result, and then asked if he intended on having her any more than a weekend at a time. He replied with a no, and that he’d let me know if he books a holiday later in the year (he clearly means a holiday for him rather than for him and his daughter). I sent him another asking if there was a reason he didn’t want to spend more than 2 days at a time with her, and mentioned that she is sometimes very upset that she can’t be with him. I have not had a reply.

I imagine he mostly does it to spite me. He doesn’t want me to have a week to myself. What he doesn’t seem to realise is that I don’t give a shit. I mostly get to do all the things I want to do, and when I can’t, it is because I put my daughter before everything else. He gets 4-5 weeks holiday a year, and as a parent with a child under 5, is entitled to 13 weeks of parental leave. I can’t believe with this amount of available time, that he cannot see his way to spending a whole week with his own daughter.

It makes me sad for Ella, and it makes me angry at myself for having picked someone so selfish to father my child. She deserves to have a father who puts her first, and wants to spend as much time with her as possible. I don’t think she misses out on much, we have lots of fun and there are plenty of people in her life who she gets love and attention from, but give it another year or so and she will want to know why she can’t stay with daddy a bit longer. To be honest I look forward to that day, because christ I want to know his answer.

We are trying to plan a week away on the south west coast, probably a holiday park in Dawlish or thereabouts. As much as I think it will be great fun, and something I will greatly look forward to, there is a residual feeling of….I don’t know. There’s just something a little bit unsettling about the fact that my boyfriend (someone I have been with for only a year, and who has not, in the grand scheme of things, spent all that much time with Ella) is perfectly happy to have a weeks holiday with my daughter, but her own father will not even entertain the prospect.

I keep myself going, and will continue to do so, by remaining confident that I give my daughter the best that I can, and taking pleasure in the memorable moments we share with other people. When she is older and asks questions I will be able to hold my head up high and say in all truth that I have always put her first, and everything I have done has been with her best interests at heart. It will not be my responsibility to explain her father’s lack of interest or commitment to her. I also remain hopeful that just maybe one day before she is old enough to question him, he realises he could do better for her. I shall cross my fingers.

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