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There are many times in our lives that we just don't understand everything... we just don't have all of the answers. That's hard enough for a grown-up to accept, but this evening I spent some time with two sweet children who have recently been abandoned by their mother. There is no way to tell you how frustrating it is to see their pain and confusion, yet have no answers to give them to make them understand. I'm a Mom myself to three grown children... my kids are all in their 20's now. Soon I'll have a daughter-in-law, as my 24-yr-old son is engaged to be married. I'm no stranger to the chaos of raising kids, nor have I forgotten the days of raising my children when they were younger. I remember very well the times that I felt I would never get to "come first" again in anything. My goodness, I can remember wondering if I would ever just get to go to the bathroom or take a shower without someone standing there needing something from me all the time. But that time does pass, and when you look back you realize just how quickly it was gone. Yet as tiring and depleting as those times can be, I never could have imagined a day without my children. It was nice to have a break now and then, but I always felt like something was missing as long as they were not with me. So how can a mom just up and leave her family? What words do you use to explain this to a 4 and 8-yr-old? And what are they learning about trust, commitment, love, security, etc?
Tonight I heard a little boy of only 4 say "I don't love my mommy any more." And my heart broke for the pain that I could hear in his little voice. I wanted to explain to both children that all mommy's are not like that... most mommy's would never dream of leaving their children. Mommy's are supposed to have a heart that loves their kids forever and takes care of their kids no matter what else the world may do to hurt them, and most do... but there's just something wrong with this mommy. What I do tell these children is that I will not hurt them. I will be there for them as much as I can - and I will do whatever I can to offer them protection and love. I remind these children that even though we don't have all of the answers, it is not their fault when grown people do bad things - and they don't have to make those same mistakes in their own lives. Rather they should love with all of their heart and be strong enough to not walk away when things are not the way they want them in life.
I do pray for this mom. In my mind I cannot comprehend what any woman must be thinking to walk away from her children. Life is complicated, and we don't always understand all the details - but there are no details that would make it okay to do what she's done. And I pray for these children - that their little hearts and minds will be protected in some way from all that they have been exposed to in the past few months. That they will grow up and be able to trust, and not be afraid to love.
I don't usually write two blogs in one day... in fact, lately I haven't had much time to write at all. But this has really been a tough week, searching for the right words to say to offer support and love that is needed by a family that is hurting so badly.