I am so not an expert when it comes to matters of divorce/split-ups, especially when there are children involved. More especially when my children are involved. I call upon all of you readers to help shed some of your experience on a subject I was lucky enough to have avoided growing up, but am faced with head on now.
Last night, after a fantastic weekend (which is not documented with photos because I forgot the damn camera) Brad and I settled on the couch to watch Sunday Night Football. Armed with nutritious Sonic foot long wieners and gigantic Dr. Pepper's, we were ready for a night of much needed relaxation and muchly more deserved indigestion.
Halfway through the game, Brad's cell phone beeps. He has a text from the girls' mom. I assumed one of the girls had left something behind this weekend; certainly it was nothing that would cause lifting my head off the couch pillow. Wrong-o. The text stated that Makayla had been crying most of the night because she wants her Daddy and Mommy to live together like a family. Whoa. Nelly.
Gut reaction: Makayla secretly hates me. Accurate? No. Paranoid and rather selfish to think this is even remotely about me? Absolutely.
Second reaction: WHAT DO WE DO? Obviously this is not going to go away. Angie is asking Brad to help because she clearly can't be expected to handle it alone.
SO...that leaves the obvious question. What brought this on? I can think of two possibilities:
a) Brad and Angie attended Parent Teacher Conferences last week together. I did not attend because that would have been too many cooks in the kitchen. Perhaps Makayla saw Mommy and Daddy together and it stirred up some emotions from the past? Makayla is old enough to remember Brad and Angie when they were together, and I'm sure that was a nice (and familiar) feeling seeing them together in her school.
b) Makayla has just reached that age where she is beginning to wonder why her friends have parents who live together and she doesn't. It probably doesn't seem very fair.
Thursday is our weekly dinner with the girls. I'm thinking perhaps Brad and Angie should sit down with Makayla before then. She's just started 2nd grade and I hate to think of her focusing on this issue rather than her schoolwork and friends. She's just- I don't know- too young to be worrying about stuff like this, and I want to hug her and make it all go away.
Unfortunately, this is one of those situations where I essentially need to lay low and let Kayla's Mommy and Daddy help her out. It's not a great feeling, knowing that I'm expected to be a Mom in all other ways, but can't, in the end, be there for her when I most want to. It's a helluva bum deal, but there it is. And with my limited experience in these matters, I sort of feel like an infant being tossed into giant waves and told "Learn how to swim. And make it quick."
Needless to say, between Makayla's questions, the foot long hot dog, and my feelings of helplessness and third-wheelishness, my indigestion is still with me this morning. I don't think Pepto Bismol is going to help it go away.
As a kid, adults told me that growing up was hard to do. I rather stupidly assumed they meant until I was 18. I gotta tell you, ages 1-18 were a friggin' cake walk. I have this horrible feeling that the older I get, the harder the learning gets. Not sure I'm ready for it....