DISCLAIMER: SM OWNS TWILIGHT.
Dadward in this story is mine.
not been Beta'd.
I woke up early Saturday morning excited that I was going to be spending the weekend with my son. This past week was hectic at the hospital. We were short staffed and I was on call for most of the week. Kate was furious that I missed both of my scheduled days to have family dinner at her house.
Kate and I have been divorced for three years but we've remained amiable with each other for the sake of our now 5year old son Nathan. We agreed that it was best to keep some sort of family structure for him and decided on family dinners twice a week.
I really missed the little guy.
Nathan just started kindergarten on Monday and I couldn't wait to hear all about his new school and all his new friends. Kate called earlier in the week letting me know that he had been doing well and seemed to really be enjoying himself. When I talked to Nathan on the phone he rambled on about the class pet he got to feed that day but we had to cut it short because it was getting pretty late. The rest of the week I came home too late to even call him to say goodnight.
I quickly showered and got dressed. I planned on taking Nathan to a diner for pancakes this morning so I rushed out of the house. I pulled the keys out to my Range Rover and unlocked the door. Before leaving I called Kate to let her know I was on my way. I only lived 10 minutes away but my speeding ways would get me to my son faster.
"Morning, Kate. I'm almost there..."
"Good morning Edward," Kate said, always a little grumpy in the morning. "Nathan's been ready to go for the last hour! He's been a little impatient this morning and he's really missed you."
"I know, Kate I'll explain it to him over breakfast. See you in a little bit."
"Bye," she said. I know she was still angry that I missed our family time with Nathan.
I drove up to the house that we used to share and parked in the drive way. Kate kept the house after the divorce because she was the one that chose it in the first place, and it was just easier for me to move out to a smaller place. I hadn't even gotten out of the car when Nathan came running out with Kate close behind him.
"DADDY!" Nathan yelled at the top of his lungs. He lunged himself at me just as I was getting out of the truck. I picked him up and squeezed him tight.
"Hey there bud. I missed you!"
"I missed you lotts Daddy," he mumbled into my neck. I squeezed once more and set him down.
"Do you have all your stuff ready?"
"Yeah, Momma packed my stuff," he said pointing at Kate who was standing on the porch with her arms crossed. Great.
"Kate I'll bring him back Sunday evening." She waved me off but I wasn't going to let her mood ruin my time with my son.
"Go give momma a hug good bye, Nathan. We've got to get going."
Nathan ran over to Kate and hugged and kissed her good bye. I got all his stuff into the truck and setup his car seat. Once I had him buckled I pulled out of the driveway and we waved at Kate's retreating form.
We arrived at the diner and got seated into a booth. This was our favorite place to eat pancakes. I ordered us chocolate chip pancakes and two glasses of milk. They never took long giving us our order so before we knew it, we were digging into those awesome pancakes.
"How do you like school so far Nate?"
His face immediately lit up.
"I like it a lot. We get to paint and play in the monkey bars. And Miss Bella reads us stories!"
"Miss Bella huh? Is she a nice teacher?"
"Mhmmm. She's nice and she sings songs with us and gives us stickers with smiley faces," he said, with his mouth full of pancakes.
"Don't talk with your mouth full Nathan," I chided.
"Sorry," he mumbled looking down at his plate as he shoveled more food into his mouth. That kid could eat. Well he was my son after all. "When are you gonna take me to school, Daddy?"
I've been wanting to take him to school since he started last week, but it was just too busy at the hospital. I made sure to get the morning off on Thursday and Friday this coming week.
"I'll be taking you on Thursday and Friday. I already told your momma I was going to pick you up in the morning." I needed to meet his teacher and have a look around the classroom that my son would be staying in for the year. I won't lie and say that his first day of school didn't have me more nervous than him.
Nathan was excited to be going to school when we told him a week before he started. We bought him his school supplies and a blue backpack that he chose himself. Although I wasn't there his first day, Kate took a million pictures of him walking into the classroom and sitting with the other kids. She e-mailed me the pictures that night. I checked some of them on my iphone because I was still at the hospital. I reminded myself to print some out to put in my office. I was so proud of him. Kate told me that he was being brave just like I told him to be and didn't even cry. If he only knew what a mess I was his first day.
I remembered that I had to apologize for missing dinner.
"Hey I'm sorry I couldn't see you this week. I was really busy at the hospital taking care of all the sick kids." I explained to Nathan hoping he would understand that sometimes I had to work even though I wanted to be with him. He nodded, but didn't say anything.
I knew he was hurt over that. I got up and went to sit next to him. He looked up with the saddest eyes I have ever seen. I pulled him onto my lap to be closer to him. He looked so small and fragile when he was sad. I needed to make this better for him.
"I'm really sorry Nathan. I promise to make it up to you this weekend. We're gonna have lots of fun together. We can go anywhere you want. Just you and I. How does that sound?" I kissed the top of his head. He had the same crazy auburn hair I did. I ran my fingers through it waiting for him to reply. He looked up at me with a heartbreaking look. I hated seeing him that way and knowing that I caused it.
"You promise, promise?" Nathan said in a whisper.
I chuckled at his "promise, promise" because that made it more serious to him.
"Yes, I promise love." I kissed his cheek and sat him back down next to me. He finally smiled back and resumed eating his pancakes.
"Did you make the kids feel better Daddy?" Nathan asked. He knew that I worked at the Children's Hospital and that my job was to "make kids feel better."
"Yeah, they felt better after I gave them their medicine. It's a good thing I was there huh?"
"Yeah Daddy… but can you tell their mommies how to give them medicine so you can come see me?" he said with finality. I had to smile at his rationale. He really missed me like I missed him.
"OK. I'll do my best, but you do know that I won't miss dinner all the time. Just sometimes when there are lots of sick kids, right? "
"Yeah ok Daddy."
"Have you made a lot of friends at school?"
"Yeah-huh daddy I gots lotts of friends now," he said nodding enthusiastically. My son was not very shy. I knew he would fit right in with the other kids. "Miss Bella says I'm a good friend b'cus I share the toys."
"She's right. Good friends always share." We had to teach Nathan about sharing early on because he had trouble sharing with his cousins Liam and Logan—my older brother, Emmet's 7 year old twin boys.
I don't know how he and his wife Rose handle those kids. They are worse trouble makers than me and Emmet combined. My mother, Esme had to have been a saint to deal with us. She was always very loving but strict when she had to be. My Dad was a little stricter with us since he was always working at the hospital. When he would get home all he would hear is how much trouble we had gotten into and he'd have to set us straight. Regardless of how much he worked he did always make time to take us to our baseball games and practices. I think he hoped that we would burn off all our energy out in the field so he wouldn't have to punish us so often. He tried.
When we finished our breakfast I paid and we made our way out. Nathan decided that he wanted to go to the zoo. We had a great time even though I had to carry him most of the time. He was too small to look over the crowd so I carried him on my shoulders. I didn't mind at all. I would do anything for him. He enjoyed all the animals and the special shows that they had. On our way out of the park he wanted an overpriced stuffed giraffe but I bought it anyway. We stopped by a fast food restaurant for an early dinner because I knew he was going to fall asleep on the way home.
When we got home I took him to his room and tucked him in.
I bought my house shortly after the divorce and made sure to have a room for Nathan for when he slept over on weekends.
He had a long day and didn't even notice when I took off his clothes and put his pajama pants on. He never wore a shirt because he was always hot no matter what the temperature was. I stayed sitting on his bed watching him sleep for a little while. I would never get tired of watching him sleep.
I used to do it all the time when he was a baby. I didn't care that I had to get up early the next morning. I loved watching him sleep, he was my pride and joy. When my relationship with Kate was at its breaking point, I cried for my son. I felt like I had failed him. We were taking away the family that he knew. Although he was only two years old I didn't want him to ever feel that we didn't love him just because his mother and I didn't love each other anymore. That is why I've made an effort to always have dinner with my son and ex-wife. I'm grateful that Kate has made it easy on us by not letting her anger toward me get in the way of us trying to be a "family" for Nathan.
Kate was miserable for a long time before the divorce and after she was just hurt at all that we were going through.
She wasn't able to handle my being in medical school and then my residency years. I was hardly ever home and when we had Nathan she resented that I was out pursuing my dreams and she was at home with a baby. I never really knew that she was feeling this way because she never talked to me about it. She kept it all bottled up inside, and one day she just couldn't handle being alone anymore. She met someone else after the divorce was finalized and I honestly hope she is happy now.
I don't ask about her personal life and she doesn't ask about mine. We both agreed that it was better not to bring anyone home to Nathan unless it was a very serious relationship and we would then discuss how to introduce Nathan to the other person.
I've dated women after the divorce, but still have not met that special girl. I always have my son in mind and always consider if the person I'm dating would be good to Nathan. Needless to say I haven't found the one.
I make sure he's tucked in well one more time and give Nathan a kiss on his chubby cheek. He won't stay here all night. He never has. Sometime in the middle of the night I'll hear his little feet padding down the hallway to my room.
Kate hates that I let him sleep in my bed but I love cuddling with him. To make things better for her I tell Nathan that it's okay to sleep in daddy's room sometimes but not in mommies' because she has to get a good night's sleep. He listens for the most part.
The rest of the weekend went by pretty quick. I took Nathan out to the park and then for some ice cream. We spent Sunday afternoon playing video games until it was time to take him back home.
I promised to be at family dinner that week and kissed him goodbye as we stood on the porch of his other house.
I hated that Nathan had to live this way with having two rooms and always going back and forth. Sometimes I wondered if this was healthy for him at such a young age. He never complained because it's what we've always done, but I'm sure it will come up someday.
"I love you, Nathan. I'll see you later and don't forget I'm taking you to school Thursday and Friday." He nodded and I looked up at Kate who finally smiled at me and mouthed "don't forget." I nodded in understanding.
I stood up. "I'll talk to you later, Kate. Call me if Nathan needs anything."
"I will Edward. You worry too much. We'll see you later." She ushered Nathan into the house and waved goodbye to me as I made my way back to the truck.
When I arrived back home i got ready for bed. I was beat after having Nathan with me all weekend. He was a handful sometimes but i loved him.
As I laid in bed that night, I evaluated my life like I always did when i was alone. I felt accomplished when it came to my job, which I loved every minute of. I had my son and my family whom I loved with everything in me, but there is always that nagging feeling that I am missing something or someone. I would never admit it out loud but I missed the companionship of a woman. I don't mean just sex because I've been with a few women these last couple of years. What I miss is the friendship and connection that comes with being in love...
I missed loving and being loved.
It's my first story and i just wanted to try this out. I'll get better, I promise!