Okay, so here’s the second chunk of my big explosion of information, trying to catch up to the New Year!
So after the accident, the next biggest thing to deal with was birthdays. Specifically, my son’s who was on December 15th. Looking at the calendar, that wasn’t doable since it was during the week. Weekends work best for as big a family as I have.
So, about the first week in December, I called my father up to tell him I had things planned for the 13th, which was the weekend just prior. I couldn’t do it afterwards because Bryan was leaving Friday night (the 18th, my birthday) to go to Arkansas with his mother for the holiday. Also keep in mind I called a week PRIOR to Thanksgiving to try and work something out! All I got told then is “we’ll plan something, don’t worry.”
This turned into a big argument/fight because what do I get told? He has concerts he’s gotta go to throughout the month for his wife.
Again. He was sound tech last year as a temporary fill in and he was claiming the same thing this year.
And it’s not that I begrudge the wife from doing something she enjoys. But its freak’n December! He has my birthday, Bryan’s, Michael’s and then Christmas for everyone! I’m sorry, but I believe children are supposed to come first and any woman marrying into this (or spouse for that matter if the situation was reversed) should understand that going in. She can do her thing, and he should do his. Taking on something that’s gonna take up half the month with random dates is just a big no no.
So, later that night we fought about it on the phone, in my sister Tabitha’s car (she was taking me to pick up mine from a separate issue aside from being hit). And his same defense every time is “I used to go down every year to see you kids.” Note the word “used” in there. Lemme clarify. He came down every year has paid child support, and mostly at the prompting at whichever wife he was with at the time. Having lived with him during his 2nd and 3rd marriage, I can attest to it.
The argument ended shortly after when his current wife made the “brilliant” (please insert sarcasm when reading this) comment about “when was the last time any of his kids drove down to visit him on his birthday.”
Now I’ll admit, I’ve not been down there for his birthday. But I’ve gone down there during the summer for a week’s time for 3 years. Once even my sister Tabitha came. But aside from that, I’m the only one of the kids who goes. It was a matter of working out vacation times with me and Adelle, and short of that, working out the single car we had. So it wasn’t easy. But I did make effort when I could.
But that didn’t count. Let’s also keep in mind this comment was by a person who claims to have a degree in child psychology, has no practice and couldn’t keep a job (twice!) tending to kids. Let’s also add that I’ve seen her do some pretty plain and stupid things with Bryan (small things, but things that lacked a lot of common sense in the bigger picture).
And she’s not getting that one reaps what you sow in life. Dad has been very flakey with coming down. Also excuses (some of which were lies) and other times he flat out didn’t bother. And he wonders why I call him on it. But she makes that comment.
So, he hears me mumble how I was gonna bite my tongue and asks if I have a comment to make. So I told him no, I had too many. I ended the thing after that cause I just didn’t want to keep it going since Tabitha was right there and I knew my anger was gonna get the better of me.
I also called my best friend later on to vent. I’d be lost without him!
Fast forward to the 13th and things were pretty good. I got his presents wrapped and Adelle got there at 6 (the party was 7) to finish up the cake at wrap her presents (which kinda irked me she didn’t have it ready before she got there, but oh well, no biggie).
Christina was the first to show up with her 2 kids and we had a decent conversation. My mother and the fam showed up shortly after (Tabitha had to miss it because she went home from work sick as a dog, which sucks but wasn’t her fault. She called at least).
We had fun just talking and doing simple things, which is perhaps the one thing I like about the family get togethers. There’s nothing complex about it. It’s simply talk, eat/snack, play and enjoy.
Michelle wanted to do some singing in Lips (Xbox 360 exclusive game, pretty fun). So, I turned on the 360 and we sang. First it was Christina and Michelle who sang a couple, and then I sang a few with her. Even mother sang a song with Michelle and later, Ron (my step father, Michelle’s father).
So, that made the night worth it to me, right there.
Eventually, we got to presents. Now, before everyone else got there, Adelle and I let him open 2 gifts that were for Christmas early since he wasn’t gonna be here. He got Halo 3: ODST and Left 4 Dead 2 (both for the Xbox 360).
I saved the biggest ticket item we got him for last; thinking/knowing it would overshadow what else he got.
So he opened Christina’s and my mother’s and our smaller ones. He was happy, but nothing really made him jump. Until he got to the big ticket one. Being the big ticket item, I couldn’t’ just make it simple and wrap it and give it to him. I decided to play a joke on him.
I had kept the waffle box from this morning when he finished them up. I wrapped up the item and then put it in there (which fit perfectly) and then wrapped up the waffle box.
When I handed it to him, I told him, “Remember I told you Bryan, money’s tight now.” “I know.” So he opens it and just looks up at me. “You got me waffles??” “Well, you liked them and ate them quickly, so I got you more.” “Fine…” and he goes to put them aside. I told him to be nice and offer some to people. At first he said he didn’t want any (not catching on and by now my brother Michael is laughing up a storm) but he agreed to and started opening the box. “I can’t believe you got me –“ He just stops in midsentence seeing another present in the box and his mouth drops. “There’s another present in here! You tricked me!”
Oh, little did he know.
So he opens that and the Heavens parted that moment. It was as if God himself descended and handed to him going, “Happy birthday, here’s exactly the thing you wanted most, son.”
“YEEEESSSSSSSSS!” was the scream that came from Bryan. And I mean screams. He was crying tears of joy, and jumped up and ran around, and pounced on me and Adelle giving us hugs that I almost couldn’t breathe through.
Everyone’s asking what it is and he holds it up proudly, “Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2!” (for again, Xbox 360).
By now, me and my brother are both laughing up a storm, My mother is trying to get in on the action saying she helped by it too (joking of course) and everyone’s astounded by how much he’s crying from joy and just loving it.
As a side note, it’s very interesting that this happened because I had just had a conversation with Laurie via Facebook 2 days prior about how Bryan has never reacted that way to anything he’s gotten and I always felt disappointed by that. So, I got my Christmas wish here as well, which made me feel really good inside.
So, that was how Bryan’s birthday went down. Needless to say, he and Brandon went to go play the game right away (after cleaning up the wrapping paper and so forth) and he beat the game’s single player campaign 2 days later. But he still plays it the most to this day.
So, that brings me up to the 18th when he left that night. And lemme point out, that by that evening, my father hadn’t even so much as called to say Happy Birthday to my son OR me. And I called him to point it out and of course, got the same ol’ sob story of how busy he was.
Anyways, I think this is a good stopping point for now. Another decent sized entry and it switches to just being me and the cat at home anyways.