Lately, it seems that my heart breaks a little every day. The first few weeks after Daddy left, L'il Sis thought Daddy was home when she heard the front door late in the afternoon. She eventually stopped announcing Daddy was home.
Recently, I learned that L'il Sis told two people that HER daddy is far away at work and can't come home. This past weekend, Big Sis noted that she and L'il Sis had their daddy dolls but Daddy didn't have anything like that and could we send him a Big Sis & L'il Sis doll. She also wanted to know when Daddy was coming home. So, to give her some idea of time, we talked about all the birthdays and other special occasions that he would miss.
On Sunday afternoon, I found Big Sis down the street getting some daddy-time with a couple of borrowed daddies. They were playing t-ball. By the time, L'il Sis and I arrived, Big Sis had stopped playing and was watching, her eyes shining and looking happy. And that broke my heart.
Then there are all those little silly moments when I wish Sam were here to share them: the girls pretending to be mermaids in the tub, L'il Sis walking up to the neighbor's dog with only a tiny bit of trepidation, Big Sis being comfortable with almost all the neighbors' dogs, L'il Sis being uber-friendly with fellow diners at a restaurant ("Hi, people!"). For all of these reasons and so many more, it often feels like my heart is breaking and I wonder if I will be left with nothing but little shards at the end of this year.
Don't get the wrong idea. We live our lives and carry on with a daily routine. We do not mope about feeling sad and sorry for ourselves. We get together with friends and have fun. The girls and I smile and laugh every day. Anyone with a 2 year old knows their cuteness and antics guarantee smiles and laughter. Even when they are being total stinkers. So, for the most part, I try not to dwell on the negatives. It doesn't really serve any purpose other than to get me upset. And that isn't helpful when I'm trying to stay positive in front of my girls. I'm trying to maintain some sort of routine and normalcy during this time. Kids need that and so do I. Wallowing in self-pity and sadness is counter-productive. Do I get grumpy and short-tempered? The obvious answer is yes. I do try to keep a lid on it, but sometimes I can't. Something has to give. Some things particularly irritate. Well-meaning people asking very earnestly, "How ARE you?" and when the answer "Fine" isn't enough, the follow-up question is, "No, really, how ARE you?" or something similar. Essentially, I feel that the asker (no matter how well-intentioned) is emotionally rubber-necking. And I'm in no mood to indulge that. So if you can't accept "fine" as my answer, don't ask. Because I really don't want or need to tell you or anyone else how broken my heart is today.