Friday, September 20, 2013

Wiping Away a Smile

His eyes lit up and he grinned when I opened the door. I love that moment when he's happy to see me. Excited because I took the time out of my day to come and have lunch with him. 

Today was the all-school barbecue and last night he begged me to come and eat with him. When I pulled up, I saw your truck and almost left. I was facing a dilemma....leave and he'd be disappointed I didn't do what I said I would or stay and hope you could be a grown up. 

I said a little prayer and headed inside. I opened the door to the classroom and sure enough, his little face beamed with happiness. He and I headed outside and he chatted the whole way out to the playground. I saw you standing over there. I told Nate you were there. . . I shouldn't have. As soon as I did, I could feel his anxiousness. He was with me? Eat with you? Which way should he go? 

and my heart broke. 

I asked him if he wanted to eat with you and I'd see him later. He looked torn. I knew as soon as I said it that I shouldn't he's torn. Of course, he wants to eat with you. But also with me. And here I was asking him to choose. 

So I took a different tact...suggesting he eat with me (because you were entertaining McKenzie) and then I'd leave and he could play on the playground with you. 

He smiled. Ok, mom!

So we went and sat down with friends. I had a moment of green envy when I realized we were sitting with Dalton, and sitting with him were his mom, his dad, and his stepdad. Yes! Two divorced people sharing lunch time with their kid. And it's two divorced parents who I KNOW don't like eachother. I wanted to text you and tell you it can be done....look there's proof!

So instead I tried to keep Nate focused. Asked him questions. Visited. 

About that time, his friend came and asked to play monkey in the middle. I jumped up and began playing. But a few minutes into it, I saw you standing over there alone, scowling. I suggested to our son that he go and get you so you could play and I gave him a hug goodbye. 

He asked me to stay until you came over and then I could leave. He was smiling as he took off to get you. 

And I waited, playing with the other kids. My heart fell as I realized what was happening. I could feel him upset from all the way across the playground. 

I walked over to tell him goodbye and he was crying. 

Through his tears, he said you wouldn't come until I left. He said he was going to walk in with you but would I please stay in the classroom. So I did. 

And he returned in tears. Again. 

And I was left trying to tell him to not get caught up in it. That this isn't his thing to worry about. I told him his little heart was capable of loving both of us fully. I explained that there was no reason for him to ever choose. 

I explained to him that we were adults and could share some time. That we both love him very much and that there's room in his life for two parents who love him. 

How do I explain to him when really what I want to do is shout at you and tell you to grow up? How do I defend your actions when I really want to tell him you shouldn't be acting like this? 

How do I tell him that if the shoes were reversed I would have "sucked it up" and came over to play? I wouldn't have "wanted" to spend time with you but the truth is I would have wanted time with him more! 

And there it didn't even stop and listen or you would have known I was leaving. You would have had 10-15 minutes with him playing, instead you wasted it breaking his heart and making him cry. 

Prayers for our son (and you) this weekend. Please don't take it out on him. 

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