It’s been my experience (and that of my friends) that no matter the reason for the break up – or the current state of the relationship between the two people involved – or whatever else is going on – or whoever else is in your lives – the splitting up of a family is difficult. It’s difficult on the two people involved and it’s difficult on the children. Nobody starts a family wanting or expecting it to fall apart some day. There are no complete winners when that happens. Holidays are especially hard on the heart and it’s hard to know what the right thing to do is.
On the days leading up to Christmas I kept myself busy with work and shopping and gift wrapping and end of the school term shenanigans. I didn’t make any time to think about how I was feeling or how I would feel when December 25th finally rolled around.
It wasn’t our first Christmas as a split family but it was a first.
The kids and I spent Christmas morning with a family that we have become close with.
Christmas day itself was good! I don’t want anything else that I say to take that away.
As far as I’m concerned it’s all about the kids. It’s about making sure they are happy and that they feel like they are a part of something special and magical and spiritual.
I think that was achieved.
In the afternoon the kids and I went to see my sister and her future husband and mother-in-law. Jay was a little (ok a lot) cranky at first but then he pulled it together (somewhat) and we ended the visit better than we started it. Luckily for us, my sister is marrying into a really welcoming and understanding family. All 2 of the people in it that I know 🙂
We left there and it was time for me to take the boys to CC’s house.
I was surprised at how dropping them off there affected me. I watched the 3 of them walk inside and a sadness fell over me. I don’t know how to explain it. I was sad that the kids had to go from house to house that day and I was sad that CC and I had come to that. I felt badly (for him and them) that he missed the first half of the day with them and I was sad (for me and them) that I would be missing the 2nd half.
At the same time that I was having these feelings a friend of mine was texting me to tell me about her particularly emotional and partly sad Christmas due to her son having a split-family Christmas. I cried for most of my 20 minute drive and felt unsettled for a long time after that.
I suppose these are the things I need to get used to. I’m assuming it will become easier. I hope more than anything that the kids are processing everything ok and they’re not being negatively affected by living this split life. I really do try my best to stay upbeat for them and to only speak positively and to let them know that they can talk to me about ANYTHING without worrying that they may hurt my feelings. I tell them that they may not always get what they want but that their feelings and opinions DO matter.
The kids are back with me now. And as I think about the evening we had they seemed happy. OK. Content. Well-Adjusted. I think they would say they had a happy and good Christmas this year.
A work in progress; that’s what we are. But we ARE making progress.
This was difficult to write. My hope was that getting it out would bring me some comfort. I suppose it has. Maybe it even has for someone else too.
My wish for the coming year is peace. Real true, inner peace. For myself, for my friend, her son, for CC and for my 2 amazing boys.