It dawned on me this week that life as a divorced dad is often way too much like being a Buffalo Bills fan. The longer your experience in either capacity, the easier it is to become more cynical and pessimistic. In both instances we start off largely optimistic and excited for the coming game or season. We know deep down that a lot of it is wishful thinking, but convince ourselves that the adjustments made during the off season will no doubt lead to success and a big win.
As kickoff looms, we wake up excited about the game and prepare ourselves for the grandeur of overcoming the odds and being victorious. It usually starts off innocent enough with several great plays in our favor and we may even be ahead at half time. But all too often, somewhere around the end of the 3rd or beginning of the 4th quarter our enthusiasm is deflated by one or two events that blow the whole game and bring us back down to reality.
We wake up Monday morning mad at ourselves for believing yesterday was going to be different. How could we be so ignorant? How could we be so naive?
Well. I will tell you. We aren’t ignorant. Nor are we naive. We’re believers. We’re eternal optimists. For to be anything else would be way too freaking depressing. And you know what else? You’re not the only fan experiencing it. All around the world, others just like you woke up Monday morning feeling stupid. There’s something comforting about that fact. There’s a brother (or sister) hood for those who know the same pain. We cry on each other’s shoulders. Sometimes it’s nothing more than a knowing nod when we pass by someone wearing a Jim Kelly jersey. It’s that look that says, “I feel ya.”
On the day after your divorce was finalized, you may have woken up and thought, “How could I be so ignorant?” How could I be so Naive?” Hell, it’s been four years and sometimes I still wake up with those questions. But you weren’t ignorant. You weren’t naive. You were a believer. And you know what? The game isn’t over. Far from it. It’s not too late to make some minor adjustments. Learn from the losses. Find strength from the defeats.
What makes it all possible is being part of the same team. And so, like any great franchise, I thought why not us? Why can’t we be a team?! And so I give you Team Divorced Dads. Complete with it’s own line of apparel & gifts. Now we can tell the whole world we’re part of the same team. There to cry on each other’s shoulder after every heartbreaking defeat. And there to high five each other on every victory.
It’s a brother hood only those who have played the game would understand. And come this Monday morning, we’ll be able to pass each other on the street and with one glance give each other some well earned support! Who knows this may even become a movement that allows us to bring attention to how much divorce has changed over the past few decades and how far we’ve come as fathers.
Visit – http://www.teamdivorceddads.com and get yourself a t-shirt or a bumper sticker. (I even threw in some clothes for the kids and for the women in your lives who have helped you threw it all). Then let me know the first time someone sees you in your shirt and gives you the nod that lets you know, “I’m part of the team!”
The point? Whether or not you where it on your sleeve (literally), know that you aren’t alone. Others have faced the same hurdles and fears. It won’t fix everything, but sometimes just knowing you’re not alone helps get you back into the huddle.