Diapers and Dragons

Monday, July 27, 2009

They're Supposed to Just be Kids

Sorry I've been off the virtual map this weekend. I was staying up with He Who Was and the boys this weekend, and the wireless modem/router died, so I was without access until today. Much longer and I would have started twitching, but I survived remarkably well for those two days.

I would love to give you the amusing post I composed in my head on Saturday night about eating at a certain very large and well-known pizza restaurant, but I'm not up to writing it today. I'm feeling heavy, weighted down with various sorrows and the sense that tears are not far off. This weekend, while the opposite of angry and stressful in terms of conflict (in other words, He Who Was and I actually got along wonderfully well), took its toll on my heartstrings. And accessing the Internet and email and blogs and Twitter came with a price today.

I opened my email to find an update on my teen cousin, the one whose mother (my mother's only sister) died a couple of years ago from leukemia, the one who was diagnosed this year with cancer of the jaw. He is going through radiation therapy right now as the follow-up to having the tumor excised, and he is struggling. His father wrote that Matthew has all the fatigue, internal and external ulcers, sore throat, and various other side effects that can result from radiation therapy, and he got them more quickly than expected. He has lost weight and will be put on a feeding tube tomorrow. In addition, he came down with H1Ni flu (swine flu, by its official name) shortly after starting treatment and has never fully recovered from that virus's debilitating effect--thankfully it was the lower-level strain or he might have been much more drastically affected.

Matthew is sixteen years old.

Then via my Blogroll and Twitter I found out that Stellan, MckMama's precious baby, is going downhill fast as the doctors struggle to determine how to stop his SVT, which is not responding to any of the previous treatments. MckMama's anguish is apparent, especially on Twitter. She is holding her son while friends and family rush to get to the hospital. I am trying to pray, and all that can escape are the words Please help them! and tears and wordless gouts of agony that this happens at all.

Stellan is eight months old.

In comparison to these families' agony, mine seems so minor in comparison. And yet I know that God cares about each of us and our pain, that He is big enough to encompass it all.

I am torn between wanting so badly to say to He Who Was Please, let's just try this again; let's just start over! and knowing that certain key issues have not changed, still loom there as great obstacles to reconciliation, and that we must continue to move forward in our efforts to create a Best Case Scenario for how we will live and care for our children while we work through the process of divorce. We are doing very well in terms of working together, negotiating instead of fighting, being friendly and even almost (dare I say it?) loving, agreeing wholeheartedly that we will do whatever is in our power to make things right for our children. This weekend, however, made it increasingly clear that our power is insufficient to make it truly All Right.

DramaBoy is showing increasing signs of anxiety and distress over our situation. Saturday as we drove back to the house from his grandparents' place (they stayed with them for most of the day so that we could work through the house deciding what to do with various belongings), DB started asking questions about where we were going and for how long. When he heard we would all be at the Blue House for a couple of days before coming back down with me to the Yellow House, he looked at me and asked Are you and Daddy going to be together?

He has asked me this before when we were spending time together as a whole family, particularly if I would be staying the night at the Blue House. It was the first time He Who Was had heard this, however, and the look on his face...I know it mirrored the way I feel every time I hear that question. And we both looked at DramaBoy and asked him if he was okay after I said that while we would all be at the house, Daddy and I would not be together. He sat with downcast face while he said, Yes, I'm okay.

He's learning how to put a brave face on it, and that breaks my heart.

His anxiety gets higher almost every day. I think The Widget's is too; he just isn't able to verbalize it very clearly. They stayed with their grandma last night, and they both wept bitterly about leaving her this morning when I picked them up. I think she is a piece of stability in their lives. They see her often (she lives only 10-15 minutes from He Who Was). She is always in the same house. She may be strict, but she's fun, and they know they can rely on her.

I think perhaps they are starting to feel they can't rely on us, their parents, quite the same way. We aren't always there. They can't have both of us. Life keeps getting disrupted. Nothing is like it was, back before their worlds fell apart.

DramaBoy is three-and-a-half years old. The Widget is two.

They're too young.

Please, God, they're all too young.

8 bits of love:

Kathleen said...

Shedding those tears you feel are not far off...praying for you and all of those who are Too Young.

Aludra said...

I'm so glad you're not lying to him. That would be so much worse. They may be too young, but they're good kids and they are SO lucky to have parents who want to put them first instead of jibing each other at every opportunity.
It may not feel like it right now, but they're some of the luckier kids out there.

Dad said...

Yes, they are all too young and my heart cries out for them all. Lord, protect the hearts of Drama Boy and Widget, through this pain. I love you, He Who Was, and the two little ones!

Draft Queen said...

First, I'm so sorry to hear about your cousin's struggle with cancer. Just the word "cancer" gets me all tied up in knots inside.

Your children will adjust and heal. In the meantime it's great that you and He Who Was are putting them first. Just be there to answer their questions at a level they understand and give tons of hugs and kisses. It's all you can do.


Mwa said...

You are dealing with so much. I think the best you can do for your children is to go through a divorce reasonably and without causing them undue anguish. Which you're obviously doing. You should give yourself credit for that.

Schmoochiepoo said...

I'm so sorry you are going through a tough time. :(


Anonymous said...

Wish there were some words I could offer to give you comfort. Hang in there... it's hard to be strong all the time, but you are doing a great job

merideth said...

my heart is breaking...

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