Everyone knows how crucial it is to maintain stability and routine for their children. That’s the foundation of trust and where security resides. But, how many adults realize that they need these things too? When one or both of these are off-balance, it induces stress. I found out yesterday just how much I relied upon routine.
My kids haven’t seen or heard from their dad in almost two months because a temporary protection order (TPO) had been in place. They’ve actually adjusted quite well with him no longer in the home, but they still occasionally ask questions. I am honest with my children; but, I do keep it brief, to the point, and age appropriate. My youngest (D4) is by far the most inquisitive and well beyond her 6 years. My 8-year-old (D3) asks very little and spends more time thinking and processing. My 13-year-old (D2) is going through a phase of hurt and anger toward her father. My oldest (D1) will be 18 this month, and she has been my rock. I don’t have to speak a word to her–she just intuitively knows. She continuously reinforces me with two simple words: Stay Strong!
I opened the mail yesterday, and to my surprise the Magistrate ordered temporary visitation rights to him starting that very day. Given just hours notice, it hit me much harder than I had anticipated. My reaction was very confusing to me. I’ve been wanting my kids to be able to see their dad. They need him just as much as they need me. And as much as I bitch and moan about needing to get out, you’d think I would be rejoicing for a two-day break. It was quite the opposite. I couldn’t hold it together and broke down in front of my 2 youngest.
D3 came over and gave me a hug and said “I love you.” D4 asked “Mommy, why are you crying? Do you want to see daddy? Do you want to see your husband?” Sometimes I am lost for words, and this was definitely one of those moments. My silence was better than telling her the truth.
Divorce spares no victims. While my stability and routine have been shaken, I must keep treading forward. I love my kids too much not to!