• Lesli Crow

It Takes Two

"In raising my children, I have lost my mind but found my soul." - Lisa T. Shepherd

I'm sure not a lot of people understand why I feel the need to give specific dates in my blogs but for me they're significant. They are a reminder of the good and the bad days that have come my way. The lessons I've learned on those dates resonate with me and give me a sense of calm in all my chaos. That being said...

February 10th 2010. I married a man I thought I'd spend the rest of my life with. But sometimes you don't always get a fairytale so fast forward to September 29th 2015. I divorced the man I thought I'd spend the rest of my life with.

Now... ya'll don't need to know all the in between of our relationship.. what's important is that February 20th 2009 we welcomed our baby boy, Alphonso Ray Crow III into this world. Zo (or Gobble as I call him) was a fighter from day one and has been a firecracker in our lives ever since.

I think I can speak for both Alphonso and I when I say that Zo has been one of if not THE best thing that has come out of our 7 year relationship.

When we divorced we did the complete opposite of what most divorced parents do. We made the decision that Zo would live with him and I'd get him on weekends. Well.. not just weekends.. pretty much whenever I wanted. We didn't want to limit my time with Zo just because I was the "other parent".

As a mother I can tell you that is one of the hardest things I've ever had to do when it comes to my kids. I don't get to love on him in the mornings, give him a bath every night, hold him when he's sick... that decision is about as selfless as they come.

As selfless as it was, we knew it was something that Zo would benefit more from in the long run. He is a daddy's boy to the T. There was a time when he was a baby up until he was about 2 that all he wanted was mommy. Then something made him realize that I guess his daddy is cooler than me and he just flipped a switch.

Their bond is nothing like I've ever seen between a father and a child. No matter who Alphonso has in his life, he wakes up every day FOR Zo. Everything he does is for that baby.

I think that's why we can co-parent so well. As much as I miss Zo every day I trust and know that Alphonso will always do what he can to make sure he's good and never has to question how much he's loved.

Alphonso and I might not have been the best husband and wife but when it comes to Zo our mindset will forever be the same. We can co-parent because Zo deserves it. He didn't ask to be here and he didn't ask for our divorce. His job as a child is to love and be loved.

So there's been plenty of times within the 2 years since we've been divorced that of course we've fought. We will never ALWAYS agree on EVERYTHING when it comes to Zo's new life. I mean... I swear if I didn't love both my boys as much as I do I'd probably end up on an episode of Snapped after some of the arguments we've had. Kidding not kidding.

I think it's easy to set our petty ways aside for Zo though. All of the different ways that we choose to parent doesn't matter as long as at the end of the day Zo is happy. I see so much hostility on Social Media when it comes to parenting after a divorce it's sad. Children should not have to suffer because the parents couldn't make things work.

Not saying it's easy... but it's worth the effort. Zo can tell if Alphonso and I aren't speaking. He's smart and old enough to feel the tension when we do pick ups and drop offs.

I can't say it's been an easy two years but I will say it's been refreshing. It's refreshing to know that I don't have to worry about a custody battle with my ex-husband, or worry about what Zo is or isn't getting when he's not with me on a daily basis.

I'm lucky things have gone the way they have. Alphonso and I will always have love for each other because we gave each other one of the best things somebody could ever ask for. We have somebody that will always love us unconditionally whether we're together or not.

Oh and quick side note - I hate the term "ex-husband". Because yes we were married at one point but I just feel like for me it's such a negative connotation. Alphonso is Zo's father and a man that I will forever be indebted to for giving me one of two of the loves of my life.

If you can't get along with the other parent take a minute to think about who you're really affecting. The fighting, keeping that person from seeing the child...it all will only leave lasting effects on the child.

I end this blog by saying respect and communication go a long way when you're trying to make a co-parenting relationship work. You receive what you dish out.