Some Resolution . . .
Things have moved along quickly today, through a text conversation while I've been between things at work.
(I know text is not the best way to communicate, but it does allow a certain bluntness of expression that can be useful, sometimes.)
As it turns out, for all that Vix seemed to be taking a hard line on her travel plans, she had consulted (as it were) Doc, who agreed with her that she should show up when she can at the end of summer, but that she should put family first; if they miss the event in question, there is an event the following week.
(To be fair, the event in question is not just some arbitrary thing, but a kind of event that actually contributes to Vix development as a teacher of the activity in question. I'm being a little coy about this, because saying more might come close to blowing her cover.)
That wasn't the end of it, though, because it came across fairly clearly, even in text, that she was caving to what she saw as an arbitrary, almost neurotic fear on my part. That's what really rankled, from the first: the sense that she was viewing my concerns with contempt, brushing them off with a dismissive: "you worry too much."
I see this as a matter of basic responsibility regarding our children; I think it's a reasonable stance, not just neurotic fear.
She may finally have come around to acknowledging that what's at stake is not mere neurosis on my part but a disagreement on a matter of principle. We still have to figure out what to do about the divergence - more explicit communication about travel plans, making sure our various commitments end up on calendars to which the other has access, and so on.
I still have a lingering sense that she does not really like giving in to a boundary she regards as unreasonable. I've told her that, since it's my own understanding of my responsibilities that are at stake, I'll just try to be careful to avoid any further conflicts like that raised by going to the UK. If I think it's important for one of us to be available to the kids at all times, I'll just be sure I'm available whenever Vix is not.
She doesn't seem very happy with that, either, and suggests just communicating and negotiating, case-by-case.
I suppose that makes sense but, since my standards of responsibility to the children are more stringent than hers, wouldn't that just create more instances in which I'm imposing on her a standard with which she does not agree, more occasions for anger and resentment?