My children are home from their first-ever trip with their father. They walked into the house, distracted by a grasshopper on our front step. I had to ask them for hugs, and it made me feel like they had already forgotten me. Or no longer needed me after spending six days with their father. Maybe they no longer loved me. Maybe he said terrible things about me, lies like he said in court. I felt teary, which surprised me.
When my children make me want to cry normally, it’s usually because it’s 10 pm and they’re still not asleep. Or because they are fighting and kicking each other and won’t stop.
But never before have I had that flash of fear that someone had turned my children against me. Then again, I know exactly who I am dealing with: the cunning and manipulative man who sat in a courtroom under oath and lied repeatedly and without any apparent remorse.
But as it turns out, my children are fine now. They are asleep in their bunk bed, after helping me with dinner and planning a weekend sleepover with friends. They are okay. They are good, even, for now. So our lives go on, especially considering EX has turned down his next visitation opportunity with them.
I’m just so thankful that my children are home. Just in time for school, and friends, and playdates, and new teachers, and the beginning of soccer and baseball seasons. For our move to the suburbs. For as close to a normal life as I can give them. An honest life filled with love.