What an emotionally exhausting few days.
Friday was the first day I drove the roads after the Big Ice Storm of 2010. Nick and I went to the court house to go through the dissolution file to make copies of all the documentation missing from the "official" papers he served. We knew there would be some.
The weekend was kind of foggy. In my head. I know Elijah had some friends over. Nick did, too. They went places as well. We talked and talked and talked until we didn't want to talk anymore. Reliving the bad times in your life is not enjoyable. In fact, I wouldn't recommend it unless you are forced. The boys and I have been forced, but this is about them so they have been very proactive in the process. Every step I have taken has been because they asked me to do it for them.
Some things that bring a mom and her children closer suck. This is one of them. While they are running into my arms faster than ever I wish they didn't have to. (But as long as they are I'll hold them tight because I'm really enjoying all these hugs!)
My son's and I have worked three years to put the pain behind us and work towards forgiveness. We had taken steps to embrace his new wife. My thought was that if I could take that step then the boys might be able to take other steps. Ya, the light at the end of the tunnel blew up and has gone dark. So much for peace.
We made one last trip to the court house, filed our motion and now we wait. Either he'll agree and we'll move on (not likely) or their lives are in the hands of God. Or the judge as this case may be. Nick will be an adult shortly and this unexpected shock disrupting his life was his final push. Elijah isn't a child either.
So after a day of emotions flooding out of the gate (honestly, I avoided this for 18 years to spare my children pain and now to go all the way back to the beginning in a public airing of dirty laundry is sickening. Heart-breaking) I had to pick myself up, but felt so weak.
as I sat in in my not-so-warm van in -30 below zero temperatures in line with other dedicated parents waiting for our sons to emerge from a 3-hour basketball try-out it hit me. Hard.
For 18 years I have been essentially the sole care-giver. I carried my children and brought them into the world. I rocked crying babies late into the night, fed hungry tummy's, kissed owies, read books, played games, explored, shared and grew with them. I have sat in this line of parents a thousands times. I've cheered at a thousand games. I've watched a thousand practices. I've driven several hundred thousand miles to do it. Oh, and the conversations I have gotten to share with my children in each of those miles has been priceless. With the except of a few dozen trips, it has been me.
And no one can take that from me. No one can take that from the kids. This has been our time to create a lifetime of memories that will bring smiles to our faces. So smile I did.
I smiled right at my son who is my best friend when he climbed into the van. I smiled with my red swollen eyes, puffy face and beanie hat covering my crazy hair. And laugh...oh, how I laughed when he told me he thought he was in the wrong car because I looked like a 25-year old child molester.
That, my friends, is all mine. It's all his. Those are our moments and nothing, not one damn thing, can take them away.
Oh, and if you'd been there you would have heard our tattoo conversation on the drive home. My crazy boys!