Frustration. There are still some residual elements from my divorce and recovery that leave me frustrated. The remaining relationship, or lack of relationship between my former sister-in-law and myself is one of those. This is particularly true in the limits to which her kids (my nieces, former or otherwise) are allowed to interact with my kids when I am in the picture.

Last night was once such instance where I find myself peeved. The niece that is closest with my son is staying in town with my ex’s folks this week. My son and her have spent most of the week hanging out. Last night was usual Wednesday night with my son. He called me before I picked him up and asked if his cousin could come and spend the night too. I had no qualms with the idea. They could probably have used the change of scenery and Drew could show off his cache of Nerf weapons and play with the cat, turtle, etc. I told him I was okay with the idea, but he’d need to get the okay from his mom, grand parents and aunt.

As I arrived at their house, I could tell there was a phone battle going on and my son was waiting for me. He was ready to go. His cousin wouldn’t be coming as her mom did not want her at my house. My son said his aunt’s only argument was, “[my son] needs alone time with his dad and she needs alone time with her grandparents.” He also pointed out what a lame argument that was. I concurred, but said her mom is the final say.

I didn’t feel it pertinent to suppose it was due to her dislike for me and that his aunt is rather close minded. We all have our reasons for things. Still, such judgments carry a fair amount of shame for me. As for me, I know I carry no threat of harm to these cousins, nor is my house in some tattered or perverse disarray to be a danger.

A part of me wants to lash out, but I know no good will come of that. In the end I just let my ex know that for the record the nieces are always welcome at my place when with my kids.

I’m sure this will play out in other various ways in the future, but the best thing for me is to stay humble. I can’t control the world, let alone anyone in it. Even my kids can only be steered to a certain degree.

There is great peace in being able to let go.