Saying Goodbye Again

Today marked the end of another fun-filled leave with Daddy. Christmas. New Year’s. Daddy walking the kids to class for the first time in months. Playing video games, doing puzzles, playing board games, baking… you name it, the kids have probably done it with Daddy and relished every moment.

The changes in behavior happened right on schedule. Last week to be exact. No one likes to be reminded of the ticking clock (especially my husband) but I do that so they’re not completely taken aback when he leaves.

“Mommy, can you fire Daddy’s bosses?”

The middle child is now seven years old and currently takes it the hardest when Daddy comes and goes. The oldest tends to bottle up his feelings, something that he’s started to do more often as he settles into tweendom. Luckily, he’s active and we have plenty of family and friends around to talk to him when he wants to talk, not to mention Daddy and Grandma and Grandpa are just a phone call away. The youngest understands a little. She talks about Daddy all of the time and asks when he’ll be home but the anguish, the pain, the heartache of missing Daddy isn’t expressed in the manner her siblings do.

“Um, I’m sorry,” I said. “I can’t fire Daddy’s bosses.”

“Well, who can?”

“Daddy’s bosses’ bosses?”

For the past three days, she went on and on about how she hated it whenever Daddy left. Why couldn’t he just stay here?

But no matter how hard R and I try to explain, it won’t numb her breaking heart.

I contacted the kids’ school and teachers to let them know the kids would be late today and the possibility that they may not come to school. Who would want to go to school when the most awesome person in the world left you to get on a plane and you didn’t even know when you’d see him again?

I wouldn’t. I wouldn’t even know how to talk to a student who came into the classroom bearing that burden.

So I distracted them with an early visit to IHOP. We spent the rest of the morning quietly reading and practicing our math facts. Lunch was leftovers from yesterday. Daddy made meatballs.

Later the kids watched the third installation fo the Lord of the Rings movie during which I fell asleep. Then the boy and I threw the football around for a bit.

There was no arguing today. No whining. No complaining.

No one wants to put up a fight when there are bigger things looming in your mind.

And life goes on.

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