Pre-visitation nerves and feelings

Sorry, I have not blogged recently. I find the pre-visitation period very challenging. It is midnight and I cannot sleep. Usually I am too tired to stay up late. Tonight is different. I am considering two challenges. These are my raw thoughts and feelings…

Firstly, I don’t want to inconvenience anybody. I have a life. I am married and we have a young child. Also, work is very busy. To work this is recreational leave.  To my wife, this is a threat – as if I am chasing the past. At their request, I have compiled a list of ‘things to do’ for both before I leave. Work deadlines need to be met. Our house needs to be in order before I leave. I feel like I am neglecting both. However, this visitation is essential.

Secondly, I feel nervous about my preparation. My Japanese skills have not improved enough (despite my promises to study harder). I don’t have enough materials for the visitation. If this all goes wrong, it’s my fault and I will have failed an innocent child. Will my efforts be enough?

Pre-visitation thoughts

I think that small but important steps will be made. Being calm and positive is important. It says ‘I love you’ without provoking her step-father. He will be watching and interfering where possible. I need to focus on what I can control to make this a positive and meaningful experience for our daughter.

On a side note, I will have some free time in Japan. I look forward to some sightseeing. There is a beautiful lake in the city I will visit – maybe I can run around it? Afterwards, I can enjoy some local food. Real Japanese food is rare in my country! I look forward to many of the simple dishes – even a bowl of oden from the local 7-Eleven will be extremely appetising. Maybe I will see friends? When I lived there, a gentleman (now) in his 70’s often took me out for dinner – I will certainly see him.

The devil inside me suggests that alcohol could be a good friend to numb the pain of helplessly observing my daughter’s stress at the hands of her abductors. Booze is cheap in Japan and there are many small bars near where I’ll be staying. However, I must focus on the task at hand. Exercise, good food and lots of rest are my secret weapon. Lets do this and make it perfect for her!

Pre-visitation reflection

This year will be easier than last year. Each visitation builds on the overall experience. I learn more. My daughter learns more. Together, we are building an important bond. It’s fun thinking about what could be.

Last year, I remember the challenges. In hindsight, we have made a lot of progress since then. I now see my daughter every month via Skype, without contest. There have been no conflicts. The family court proceedings are over. I know there is much improvement to be had. However, we have time for that.

If I can have a visitation this year without the need for court proceedings, it will be a big achievement.


It is getting late and I am very tired. After this visitation I’ll need to have a debrief and plan ahead based on the circumstances. I remain optimistic that there will be progress this time around. However, it is time for me to rest now… there’s a big week ahead.

If possible, I’ll try to blog about each day of the visitation this year.