Yesterday was my fourth Mothering Sunday as a separated parent.
The first, just two months in, was sort of OK, I saw both of my children.
The second was strained but both of them saw me; my daughter refused to speak to me all day and practically threw the most beautiful canvas (she had painted for me) at me. It said “sometimes I don’t show it and sometimes I do but inside I will always love you”. She lived with me at the time, her older brother now 18 has not lived with me since day one of being apart. (I only realised the alienation had started before we were separate after reading Karen’s blog about the alienated parent (https://karenwoodall.wordpress.com/2014/11/01/i-am-the-alienated-parent/ ).
Last year I didn’t get a card but I think I received a message from one of them – I chose not to sit in and wait “just in case” and was accused of not bothering.
Yesterday I waited all day, I saw my mum, my daughter saw my mum (thank goodness). My ex went to Spain for the weekend with friends leaving my 16yr old to fend for herself. “She has food and contacts, she will be fine…” I heard nothing from either of them, all day, not a card, a text, a smiley face, a call, a knock. I smiled at the joy of all the other mums (Why did I even look at facebook?) I knew it would be like that, but I don’t feel envy for those mums but sadness for my two babies, unable to bring themselves to make contact. They must have suffered all day…
I did miss one call, as I was out briefly when I knew my daughter was at my mum’s, it was a card from the family of a good friend who died several years ago. I have worked really hard to provide her three children with support and to facilitate their grief. The card came signed with love from “your other family” my friend’s parents, siblings and children. It was beautiful, but you will hopefully understand when I say, “not enough to make be feel better”.
Today I have attended a long meeting with my divorce solicitor, who was interested and worried by my children’s response to this family separation. I printed the three descriptive blogs of parent, child (https://karenwoodall.wordpress.com/2014/10/18/i-am-an-alienated-child/ ) and alienator (https://karenwoodall.wordpress.com/2014/10/25/i-am-the-alienator/ ). Perhaps my barrister can use it in court?
The sheer emotion and anxiety of the last 24 hours has left me drained, sleepless, nauseated, with heavy palpitations and excessive tears. I’ve even lost my appetite – a first!!
Hopefully next year it will be different, or the next…