FaceTime calls with children

I wonder why some of us hang our heads when we grieve

geralt / Pixabay

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…

Connection lost…retrying…

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.


Zauberin / Pixabay


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.


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  1. Pamela Nevins says:

    Matt, my heart is breaking for you. I’m so very sorry you have to go through this. This was not your doing, but hers. You must stay strong for him. Yes, yes, yes he KNOW you love him. No one can take that away. Just keep calling often and seeing him as much as humanly possible when he gets back. But he will always know and feel how much you love him. You’re right, it won’t always be this hard.
    Be strong…for yourself and for AJ.
    Love is all around.

  2. I’m sure he knows how much you love him, and he will understand. I am so sorry you are going through a painful time. Virtual hugs, wherever you are.

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