Ex-wife got some lovely bath products this Mother’s Day. I know this because I picked them out, supervised the wrapping and delivered them to Child Two to give to his mother at the appropriate moment. I quite like her gift. I hope she did as well. Ex-wife bought me something too. She got me flowers. But Child Two told her not to give them to me – that I’d be mad because I don’t like Mother’s Day. He’s right actually. Not that I’d have been mad. But that I don’t like Mother’s Day. It seems silly. Like Father’s Day or Valentine’s Day or Secretary’s Day or any holiday made up by Hallmark. Consumer conspiracy – that’s what it smacks of.
But I do like being a mom – even a stepmom. And I like it so much I even tag along at events where really barely one parent is required much less two or three. The other night I went to “College Night” with Child One and Ex-Wife. Sig Other was out of town so I stepped in on his behalf. It was fun actually. Child One got to live her fantasy life as the daughter of lesbian moms for a few hours. Ex-Wife and I played along. We shouldered through the crowds together, milled through the bustling gymnasium as partners and picked up information from Child One’s of prospective universities. We're rather successful as and Ex and Current wife team. Its what I call "ex-cess".
At one point during College Night, Ex-Wife stopped to chat while Child One and I wandered. At the Pitzer table was a gentleman I’d met earlier. “Oh,” he said, “lovely to see you. Is this your daughter?” “Yes,” I replied. We started to chat about the Claremont colleges when Ex-Wife approached and I introduced her as Child One’s other mother. “Oh,” said Pitzer Guy with the great enthusiasm of a man who’d just made an important discovery. Suddenly, Pitzer Guy became just a little more attentive, just a little more interested, just a little more soliticous. Because suddenly, Pitzer Guy was interviewing a girl who might be just a little bit more exotic than her fellow applicants – she was girl with two moms. Ex-Wife and I played our roles flawlessly, providing Child One great joy, if only for a moment, before she remembered the stress of the college application process.
And tonite, quite out of the blue, Child One asked me if I like having an ex-wife. I gave her the most honest answer I could. “Yes,” I said, “because if I didn’t have an ex-wife, I wouldn’t have children.” And that’s the way I feel. “Besides,” I continued, “as ex-wives go, she’s the best version possible.” Child One seemed satisfied with this answer and moved on to a deep discussion about prom dresses and high heeled shoes.