Today I’m going to share something with you that I don’t even like to think about much myself, let alone talk about publicly. I worry maybe I shouldn’t share these very private issues, but I’m going to because my goal is that through our vulnerability and raw emotion you will find comfort knowing you’re not alone. I don’t know for sure if any of you have experienced these things, but it is my hunch we are not unique. If someday my kids are angry with me for airing our vulnerabilities, I hope they’ll know it wasn’t to embarrass or exploit them, but to help others and us through it all. I hope they will learn there is no shame in grief. I pray they’ll learn the healing power of honesty. I hope you know this too.
Gman had counseling this morning. He really likes his counselor and looks forward to going. After today’s session the counselor called me back privately. Apparently Gman thought the counselor would be a perfect replacement Dad. My heart breaks. Gman doesn’t really want to replace his Dad; he wants his Dad and his family the way we were before. He wants to feel the special bond he had with his Dad.
I’ve told him my heart is still married to Daddy and that I am not even close to ready. Maybe (probably) I will never be ready. I reassure him that we are still a family even though we are a different family now. We talk about how his Dad is with him in his heart and how we will see him again in heaven. None of it takes away the deep ache he has in his little heart.
Gman’s counselor is really good at his job. He handled the situation well and will continue to help Gman through it over time. But I worry about people who may come into his life and prey on his vulnerability. I pray he will be protected from such things.
And then there’s guilt. I lost my cool again last night. My patience is at an all time low lately and there’s been a lot of yelling and regrettable parenting going on. I know this makes the kids miss their Dad even more. Things are sometimes terrible and they’re stuck with this impatient, yelling, tired, lunatic of a mother. One of the beautiful things about my marriage was that usually only one of us lost our mind at a time. The kids always had at least one calm, loving and sane parent to turn to when the other was having a hard time. Now it’s just me. There’s no better half to swoop in during those moments.
We need more time to heal, obviously. We need more prayer and we need extra grace. I am confident we are going to be ok one day. I believe in our ability to love and forgive one another. I trust God will see us through this scary, vulnerable, life feels upside down season. But right now it all feels terribly out of control. It feels lonely and frightening. We all just want what we can’t have and are learning to accept the things we can’t change.