Paul's Heart

Life As A Dad, And A Survivor

The Best Christmas Gift So Far

Earlier this week, I was given the best Christmas gift and the most thoughtful.

While many might make the comment, I deserve what I am dealing with because of moving away from my daughters, and many might also realize, how bad things had to have been in dealing with certain individuals for me to have relocated this far, this post is not about that.  This post is about what happens when people put the children who are stuck in the middle of a nasty divorce, first in priority, doing what is best in the interests of the children.

Up until this year, I have never missed a choral performance of either of my daughters, whether it be church or school.  At best I was hoping for maybe my estranged wife to record a song or two.  Instead, what I got was so much better.

I wrote a post some time ago, about the role that technology now plays in divorce and custody, allowing better and more frequent contact between a distantly located parent and their child(ren).  Between technology, and a family member, I received the best Christmas gift I could have hoped for.

I received a telephone call via Tango (a video call service), from my brother-in-law, saying that he was going to video feed the concert to me, as long as his cell phone battery would hold up.  I was in shock at what was about to happen.  I really thought I would not get to see this, but because family was trying to do what was best for my daughters, and not get involved with pitting one side against the other, two little girls were about to find out something magical.

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Because of this kindness, I was able to see the entire performance.  But the generosity did not stop there.  Following the conclusion of the concert, my brother-in-law rushed up to the stage, where my daughters were waiting for their mother, and showed each of my daughters what had just been done.  Their smiles were a pure Christmas Miracle when they saw the other face in the screen of his phone was me.  And just like that, the phone battery finally ran out.  And it was a miracle, to me, and my daughters.  Cell phone batteries only last for so long without being charged, and using high data, but the battery lasted long enough for both my daughters to see that I was “with them” that night.

I was able to share with them, two of my favorite songs that they sang, and conversation flowed from that.  Instead of just asking “how was your concert?” I was able to tell them that I enjoyed the concert.

And that same technology would bring us back together again yesterday morning.  Since I was unable to be with them Christmas morning, I had their gifts sent to them in time to open them for Christmas.  And we dialed up Facetime, and I got to see them open their gifts, and read a letter that I wrote to them, telling them that I missed them, that I loved them, and that this would be the last Christmas we would be apart.  I promised them that things would get better.

And as long as they are able to hear my words, read my words, they will believe I will keep that promise.  And yes, I will never forget what my brother-in-law did for me, but I will also make sure my daughters never forget it either.

This is one of those stories that shows the good that can come during a divorce process when you put the children first.

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