Today, I talked to my son on the phone (FaceTime) the who is currently 9 hours ahead of me. It was incredibly hard.
He asked where I was. When I told him I could see the wheels turning behind his eyes. He looked away. I asked him where he was, how the flight was, what he watched–all questions which he deferred to his mom for the answers. I could see that he was getting a little frustrated. At the mention of bed, he began to get upset. Tears even.
Not atypical young child behavior, right? Right…
At this point I’m feeling guilt well up within me. Guilt is a monster that is always rattling its chains but at times like these it takes over. It pulls at my clothing and squeezes my internal organs.
After reconnecting, it is clear that he is trying to talk to me, to do the “right” thing, but just wants to end it. As he cries–through the buffering, freezing segments of video–I look at his face and I just want to touch him and tell him it’s ok. He’s not on a hot seat of any kind and he doesn’t need to be polite for me. It’s hard not to think he is rightfully upset about circumstances. I am sorry for this. I tell him again that I love him and I’ll see him later. Have a good time. Eventually I hang up on the spinning “Reconnecting…” graphic.
Now the monster screams and berates me. It pulls at my hair and punches me in the teeth. I sob uncontrollably.
One day I hope he will understand, and forgive me. Some day soon I hope that I can reassure him. I hope that he will feel my hope for something better on the horizon. I hope he believes I love him so much. It won’t always be like this.