Recently, my husband, his ex and his daughters had a fight. It got pretty ugly. The relationship between them is pretty new. My husband was estranged from his daughters for the first ten years of their lives. But last December, his ex, Shannon, contacted him. Their relationship blossomed and we thought all was good. We had planned our first family trip to see them for Thanksgiving, but the fight got in the way. I’ve talked to them breifly on the phone, and we’ve messaged on Facebook, but I have yet to meet them. I wrote my thoughts out last night and figured it was an important thing to share.
The relationship I dreamed we’d have started out with a knock on the door, me standing behind Jason with big smiles on our faces and the kids in tow. Shannon would open the door with a smile and the girls would run up to hug Jason. Then, they’d see me. I’d give them big hugs and kisses on the tops of their heads. They’d pick up Ninna and hug their brothers, and everyone would be happy. They’d beg to come up for visits, and maybe all of summer break. When they’d visit, we’d do wonderful family stuff like trips to the museums in Richmond and DC, and eat cupcakes, and go swimming, and play! Us girls would go out for pedicures and we’d have a girls night out dinner once in a while. When they weren’t here, they’d call Jason a few times a week and maybe even ask to talk to me occasionally, to tell me about boys or photos they had taken for me. It would be wonderful and happy, I’d be like an aunt and they’d be my little girlfriends.
Can you mourn for something you never had? I’m sure that’s pretty normal, really. But after all the drama, I was left feeling…empty. And then, i suppose, I started through the stages of grief. At first I didn’t believe it was them writing those words. And maybe I still believe that – or at least question. I went through the depression. Sadness at how things went, feeling rejected and at a loss. I’ve wondered what I did wrong and how I could of fixed it. And now I’m angry. If it was them, why did they play us? Why did they say they loved me, and fake the connection they had with Jason? If it wasn’t them, why couldn’t they find a way to tell us that? At 11, I was certainly sneaking the phone. Or getting on the internet without my parents knowing. But that’s not really a fair thing to put on them, I know. In my rational mind. The part that doesn’t feel. Problem with that side is, once I let it take over, it’s really REALLY hard to push it back. The whole point of it is to not feel that pain anymore. Do I really want to do that with Jason’s daughters? It hasn’t been very long. Maybe things will change and we’ll get answers to our questions and closure. Or time will go on and I’ll feel acceptance. Acceptance. Not what I had hoped for, but sometimes it’s gotta suffice.