RemembeRED: Affection

Posted on | June 14, 2011 | 25 Comments

From the beginning of this madness, I  tried to shield J from my tears. 

He’s a sensitive little boy and I didn’t want to disrupt his life more than it already had been by the packing and departure of his father followed by the packing and departure from the home he knew for ten months.  Packing was made into a game, leaving into an adventure.  I didn’t want this to be a sad exodus for him, but rather a joyous return to a larger house with room to run.

For the better part of a month, I managed to keep the tears secluded to my bedroom at night or my car after dropping him off at daycare.  I have never been a fan of crying in public and didn’t want to become *that* woman, who cried at the drop of a hat and who ruined every social occasion with sloppy, snotty, tissues.  I cried in private.  I mourned on the pages of my journal and the urls of this blog, but I did not mourn in front of my son.  When it was time for J to visit his father, I told him how excited he should be.  I told him that his father was so excited to see him and that they would have so much fun together.  I told him he had a wonderful father who loved him very much.  And when he left, I would cry for the words that I had to force off my tongue and for the loss of my little boy, albeit only briefly.

It was bound to happen.  I was bound to slip up at some point.  No one can maintain perfect calm in the face of a perfect storm, even to protect their child.  And one day, things became too much, too heavy, and too sad for me to excuse myself from my son.  The tears came without warning and his little face grew worried as he stopped in his tracks and stared at me.

“Momma?” He was questioning, looking at my splotchy face and weeping eyes.  “Momma?”

He reached out a hand and touched my arm.  I told him I was okay.  I told him that Momma was sad but that she would be okay.  And then my sweet, sensitive little boy toddled up close to my side.  He laid his head on my shoulder and wrapped his chubby little arms around me.

“Momma hurt,” he said, muffled by the curve of my neck.  The softness of his voice, the sadness in it’s tone caught me off guard and the tears rushed faster.  Momma was so hurt.

“Yes.” I sniffed the word out to my son, unable to say anything else.

He pulled back and looked at me again.

“Momma hurt,” he repeated and then made a loud kissing noise in the general direction of my face.

“Momma okay?” He smiled and hugged me again.  He had kissed it better.  In his world, all hurts could be kissed better and his momma needed that reminder.  I dried the tears from my face and lost myself temporarily in the sweet, soft curls of my baby’s hair.

Momma was hurt.  Momma was so close to broken that she wasn’t sure how she’d piece herself together again.

But, yes, my sweet little son… Momma was most definitely going to be okay.


25 Responses to “RemembeRED: Affection”

  1. Andrea @paralegalmom
    June 14th, 2011 @ 10:54 am

    I love it when the kids know exactly what we need from them

  2. facie
    June 14th, 2011 @ 11:17 am

    I too try not to let my kid (almost 8) see me cry, but we are all human and sometimes just cannot hold it together anymore.

    You have definitely had your share of hurt, but, yes, you WILL be okay. So glad J helped to dry your tears. 🙂

  3. monk
    June 14th, 2011 @ 11:28 am

    i love that little boy. he just made me cry. yes, monk, you are hurt. and yes – you WILL be okay.

  4. Janet
    June 14th, 2011 @ 12:05 pm

    How do they learn emotions if we don’t show them once in a while? You hurt badly now but it won’t always be this painful. That little boy will help you keep your focus and your ability to love. You’re going to be ok and so will J.

  5. Miranda
    June 14th, 2011 @ 12:11 pm

    Beautiful, lady. Just beautiful.

  6. Nellie
    June 14th, 2011 @ 12:50 pm

    What a precious moment, thank you for sharing it with us.

    I have two little girls, 3 and almost 5 and they are like barometers for my feelings. Even if I’m not crying they know when I’m feeling down, they tell me they love me more and they snuggle with me more. It’s amazing how I they are so intuitive.

  7. Rusti
    June 14th, 2011 @ 2:12 pm

    this made me cry, my Goose gives comfort the same way if I’m sad or not feeling well… they remind us that we WILL be okay so perfectly. this was a beautiful post. thank you for sharing.

  8. aim
    June 14th, 2011 @ 2:14 pm

    sweet little lovebug. He is such a tender soul (and very rough and tumble all at the same time)!

    Love you. Glad he is there to kiss it better…

  9. Anne R.
    June 14th, 2011 @ 2:28 pm

    Your words always make me cry, because you always speak of truth and real situations! I’ve been in so many similar situations as you.

  10. Kir
    June 14th, 2011 @ 3:14 pm

    this made me tear up, for the whole situation.
    It’s so true that our babies get to know our feelings (even when they are pushing them to the edge of sanity) and their hugs can cure just about anything.

    You are going to be ok. This I know! xo

  11. Kisatrtle
    June 14th, 2011 @ 3:19 pm

    Kids always know what to do

  12. NotJustAnotherJennifer
    June 14th, 2011 @ 3:33 pm

    Trying to type through tears. I haven’t been through divorce, but I have had my girls console me like this, too. It’s a beautiful thing.

  13. Galit Breen
    June 14th, 2011 @ 3:38 pm

    Beautiful, touching, heart-wrenching.

    Your words are so beautiful, the emotions so poignant. Every one of my heartstrings are pulling for you right now.


  14. Mama Track
    June 14th, 2011 @ 3:52 pm

    What an angel he is. And you are so strong. You guys are going to be ok. Better than ok–you’re going to be awesome. Together.

    Hang in there.

  15. HonestConvoGal
    June 14th, 2011 @ 5:00 pm

    I so understand wanting to save your son from your pain. That means you’re a thoughtful, selfless mama, which we already knew. But I think it’s o.k., every now and again, for our children to see us hurt and see that we’re o.k. afterwards, just like you say. They feel pain too, and they need to see by your example that they will be o.k. later, afterward. He didn’t need to know why you hurt–that’s too big for him, not about him. But it’s o.k for him to know THAT you hurt.

    As usual, this is an honest, beautiful piece. Well done.

  16. Victoria KP
    June 14th, 2011 @ 6:25 pm

    Gorgeous and heart wrenching. Affection from our little ones can really put things in perspective.

  17. Katie
    June 14th, 2011 @ 8:54 pm

    Oh, this gave me chills! Your bravery and strength is so amazing. The fact that you went so long without sharing your sadness with your son is really admirable, and yet, when you did break down in front of him, he gave you exactly what you needed all along. That “kiss to make it better,” the purest form of love in the universe. Your words are powerful and beautiful. I’m so sorry you had to go through this pain, and I appreciate sharing this with us through such beautiful writing.

    Stopping by from TRDC, and so glad I did.

  18. KristinaYellow
    June 14th, 2011 @ 8:55 pm

    It’s amazing how kids are so intuitive and as much as we try to shield them, they get it anyway. I’m so glad his kisses are magical for you and that he gave that you that healing. You have one special little man there…and he’s got one heck of a Momma!

  19. Erica Snipes
    June 14th, 2011 @ 10:54 pm

    I love my daughters, but sometimes there is really nothing better than the sweetest of sweet little boys. Although I am not in your situation, I can easily imagine my little boy doing this kind of thing, and it makes me so happy that even in your emotional struggles, you get to be comforted by your special little boy. I agree with others who have commented that kids need to see our emotions to learn how to have and manage their own. I know you don’t want to make having a sobbing session in front of your son a regular occurance, but obviously it was time you both needed…you to feel, him to learn how to comfort. I’m sure I’m not the only one who sends big hugs to you both.

  20. Frelle
    June 15th, 2011 @ 8:41 am

    So glad for his little heart reaching out to his mama. *HUG*

  21. Tara@DoTheseKidsMakeMeLookCrazy
    June 15th, 2011 @ 8:46 am

    While I don’t think we, as parents, should make adult problems kids’ problems, I think it’s important to let them see the natural variation in emotion AND how to cope with it. He saw you sad, but he also saw you regroup. I think that’s role modeling at it’s finest.

  22. Delia
    June 16th, 2011 @ 5:55 pm

    This brought tears to my eyes. If only it were as simple as kids see things! Glad J was there to kiss the tears away. You are right. You will be ok.

  23. Cheryl @ Mommypants
    June 18th, 2011 @ 7:10 pm

    You done good, mama. You have an empathetic child who has clearly had his boo boos kissed by a loving mother. Such a beautiful thing. Truly.

  24. Anastasia
    June 19th, 2011 @ 8:20 am

    It’s so hard when your kids are comforting you, but it’s also sometimes just what you need. Great post.

  25. Angela
    June 22nd, 2011 @ 5:47 am

    Wow. Tears. You have a way with words.

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