Monday, December 12, 2005

2005, 12/12 - Divorce Talk

Tonight, I finally talked to Munchkin about the impending divorce.

It came up rather organically. During our Long Talk at Bedtime, she asked about how people could become "unmarried". I answered her questions as best I could...and I realized this was the chance I'd been waiting for--or the moment I'd been dreading.

I lay down next to her, wrapped my arms around her, took a very deep breath, and very calmly and matter-of-factly, just, gave her the information I thought she would need.

She took it in stride, perhaps because I sounded calm about it--and because her father and I have been separated for almost a year now. She had a few questions--what would happen to her if I died ("death" is a constant topic of discussion between us this year); what would happen to her if Mommy and Daddy both died; etc. I explained all such scenarios for her, and added in a few other things: That I will always be her Mommy. That What's-His-Name will always be her Daddy. That she is the most important thing in the world to both of us.

I started to get a little teary-eyed, reminding her of how important she is to me.

I told her if she ever feels afraid or worried about anything, she can talk to me about it, and I will help.

Finally, I asked her, "Do you have any other questions about divorce?"

She snuggled closer. She paused. She looked upward at the paintings on her walls--paintings the three of us had made as a family one afternoon, a year or so ago, just for fun--beach scenes, family members as cartoonish animals, a clown, some "modern" art...

I lay still, with bated breath. I am expecting questions about step-parents. She's seen "Cinderella" and currently harbors some definite, unsavory, ideas regarding stepmothers. Or maybe she wants to know if we'll still be able to do things together, as a family. Maybe she'll want to know what we're going to do at Christmas. Maybe she'll be angry she wasn't told sooner.

Upon finally having gathered her thoughts, she responded, "I think... you need... more decorations on your clown!"

We both then burst out laughing at her cunningly planned (and only funny to us) joke. We gave each other big hugs, and I tucked her in for the night.

*I do anticipate facing difficult questions later, as she mulls over this new information. But she took Part I well. And I am glad this is out in the open; I am more than a little worried she has begun thinking it is normal for married people to live apart.

**Sorry this wasn't funny.


punky brewster said...

You are a very good Mommy.

Munchkin is lucky to have such a loving, smart and well dressed Mommy. :)

Munchkin's Mama said...

Muchas gracias, mi amiga. :)

No soy well-dressed today, though. 'Saving all my good clothes for the next four days--well, the warm ones, anyway. ;)