i miss my kids

My children have gone to Florida for five days to enjoy the beach with their father and their stepmother's family. I am happy for them to go, and my two eldest were looking forward to it. All of my children love the beach. But E., my littlest, did not really want to go. He was afraid he would be homesick staying with people he doesn't yet know well (stepmother's family) and had just basically decided he would rather stay home with mama this time. But plans had already been made and his father was, of course, very much looking forward to taking him on the trip, so I told him he had to go.

The moment of me leaving him yesterday was very difficult. E. was a very, very unhappy child. This made me a very, very sad mama. I felt really sad and blue all day long yesterday after leaving him, and I didn't sleep well last night. Of course he will be fine, and will probably end up having a great time. And of course he needs plenty of time with his father, just as he does with his mother.

But none of that made it easier to leave a sobbing child yesterday. He was clutching his favorite purple blanket and just howling. Big, salty tears were rolling down his cheeks. This was some serious sad.

I drove away from his father's house, but had to stop after my car was out of sight to pull myself together. For the first time in a long time, I had a good, long cry about how hard it is to be away from my children a lot of the time because their father and I are divorced. In some ways, it never gets easier for me. As I've said before, I often feel as if I am missing out on a huge chunk of their childhoods. But of course, there is no better solution, given that their father and I are divorced. You do the best you can.

I hope the kids call me today and tell me that E. has cheered right up and is happily playing in the sand with his father.


Anonymous said...

It's too bad no one called you last night to tell you they'd arrived safely and to update you on E., who was probably calmer. (So much of this is anticipatory anxiety. Poor guy!) I insist on as much after a rocky pickup/dropoff like that.

You need your sleep. Do what you can to get it.

katie allison granju said...

They were probably too tired to call last night, which I understand.

I did call his dad late yesterday afternoon when they were on their way down, and he said E. was calmed down.

Anonymous said...

Good! I just want you to do what you can for yourself. I'm glad E. is calmer.

I am in the same boat, with one. It is the hardest thing, all the time away from our children. I think it's something of a mystery to people who haven't been there. Also, I feel "bulldozed" by things sometimes, and try to do what I can to diminish that, like contact after a rocky pickup/dropoff.

I hope you get a better night's sleep tonight!

Anonymous said...

E. might also be feeling sad because he's worried about you. As long as you stay calm, it will help him. Of course he knows you'll miss him, but he might also be sad because of your feelings.

katie allison granju said...

Yes, I agree. T

The kids do know I miss them when they are away. To say otherwise would be a lie. But they also know that I get lots of things done when they are gone, and I am fine.

It's important not to put the burden for making parents "be okay" onto children.

mamalife said...

More northerners down here on Spring Break ;) Bet once on the beach he settles in and has a wonderful time.