You smelled the smell?

In case you've missed the fab site, Awkward Family Photos (and if you have, prepare to set aside some time to peruse every picture there) get thee to this URL:

Legen - wait for it - dary. Seriously. They thought this was a great idea when they did it ... it's no full-body fur suit with genitalia, but it's definitely a ... ... well, it's a choice.

Yay. It's back.

That funky smell that only I smell and that follows me everywhere. And, of course, the accompanying eye burn/watering and mild headache. The fact that my eyes react too makes me a little less concerned that I'm crazy or I have a massive brain tumor (because google olfactory hallucination and I'm either a total nutjob or, you know, on death's door), and makes me wonder if there's some type of allergen in the air that I'm just acutely sensitive to. Maybe it's mold. Whatever it is it's eve.ry.where.

I borrowed Bean from Dave to take her to a BBQ at a friend's yesterday, and everything was fine until it came time to leave. Bean freaked out and melted down, hitting and screaming. Got her loaded in the car after more hitting and an attempt at running of and she whacked me in the face. Good times. She finally mellowed enough to tell me she wanted to stay with me and not go back to daddy's.

So I talked her down and told her that I was sorry that having two homes was so hard on her, yadda, yadda, yadda. Becuase that's what it seems to be to her - just Dave and I blowing smoke up her ass and her life, on occasion, sucking beyond the telling of it.

It breaks my heart that this has become so hard for her. I'm not sure why, or what can really be done except to empathize without apologizing too much. By that I mean I think it's okay to tell her "I'm sorry this is so hard for you" but I never say "I'm sorry your dad and I got divorced". Seems an odd distinction, I guess, but to me there's a difference between validating her feelings (the former) and apologizing for something that, one, I don't really have to apologize for and two, I don't think *should* be apologized for. At least not in the context of conversations with Bean.

If I apologize for the divorce, that casts it in an even more negative light, if that makes sense? That it's something to apologize for gives it weight, in a bad way. But if I empathize when she feels bad, it's giving what she feels weight, and that's good. It makes a lot more sense in my head than it does when I'm trying to explain it ... maybe it's my insane brain tumor talking ...

I like to be as forthright and honest with her as I can be, but I hold back a bit when it comes to this kind of stuff. Maybe 'hold back' isn't the right choice of words, but you know what I mean, right? When she asks "why did you have to get divorced?" she doesn't need 'the truth'. She needs the mutual decision party line of "sometimes grownups can't live together anymore/stop loving each other/whatever."

Does that make sense? I hope I'm doing this right ...


odin&zephyrsmama said...

I have a hard time seeing divorce related child comments in a different light in my own life but maybe I can offer some fresh perspective to you since I'm on the outside of your situation...when we go to the store and Odin wants a toy, I try to make him see that we already have something very similar to that and those are for the kids that don't have one of those so we need to leave it for them to have so they can get one too since we are SO lucky to have one already. He accepts this conversation like gospel...about what a great thing we are doing leaving it at the store for the other kids and how lucky we are to have one already...even when we actually don't have one like that...maybe you need to approach your situation like that...look how lucky you are Bean to have TWO homes! Think of all the kids that don't get to have TWO beds and TWO sets of toys, and TWO parents that love them! Mommy and Daddy both want to see you SO much that we have to SHARE you! Thank goodness Mommy and Daddy are so good at sharing! You are so lucky to get to do all the things Mommy does AND all the special things Daddy does! Think if you only got to do HALF the things. You would be SO bored the rest of the time! When you are at Daddy's all Mommy does is "fill in blank with things she thinks are REALLY boring." Maybe these ideas will help...

tobethode said...

I think you are doing okay Vick. I know this is hard for her but she is really just too small to go any further into things with her. As she gets older and her questions and concerns are more concrete versus just "I don't want to go to Daddy's" you can go more into divorce with her.

In the meantime, keep doing what you are doing. What was said above me is good too if Bean falls for it. Not saying she isn't lucky but she seems mighty smart and may think you are blowing smoke by telling her that. ha!

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