Making Divorce Easier on the Kids Starts at Mom's New Home
I saw this in The Stir - Are your kids struggling with your divorce?
To those of you who read my blog, Mommy Wants Vodka, you know that I'm in the process of a divorce. In fact, just this very weekend, I moved out of my home of seven years and into a one-bedroom apartment of my very own.
On the one hand, it's an exciting time, and on the other, change is HARD, yo.
The most important thing for me is not, "Do I have a working coffee maker?" but "How can I make this adjustment easiest on the kids?" I've spent more time thinking about that than I've ever spent despising John Mayer or mayonnaise (unrelated, of course) combined.
It's been of the utmost importance to me that my beloved children are okay. While I may be riding the roller coaster of emotions associated with the termination of my union, what I feel is not important by comparison to how my children are coping.
One of the first things I did when I was told I had to move out as I couldn't afford the mortgage alone was to start planning ways to make my home feel like a second home to the children. I made sure to find replacements to all of their lovies (my daughter has a stuffed Webkins and my son has a special blankie), which, I'm telling you, after those things have been off the market as "new toys," isn't as easy as 1, 2, 3. In fact, it was exorbitant to do so, but it was worth it.
Rather than bring the kids over in the midst of unpacking my new apartment, I was sure to set things up so that it didn't feel as though they were walking into Box Hell, because, well, the place wasn't always going to be filled with boxes filled with my former life. I waited extremely impatiently until my place was in suitable enough shape for my children to feel as though it was a home and not a box repository. I'll tell you right now, that was NOT easy. I wanted to immediately show them their second home, but I did wait.
Bringing them into their second house, I was sure to plaster a huge smile on my face and lovingly show them around. I'd been fortunate enough to find extra boxes of toys in the basement that I'd stored for a rainy day, which I'd brought with me. Even better, I'd been offered the sort of stuff from PR companies I normally turn down because, well, PR stuff isn't my forte, unlike scented candles, which are.
They were thrilled to come see Mom's new place -- their second home -- even more so when I showed them that they had new toys to play with, a space for them to eat their snacks, and a cupboard full of their most favorite treats.
So while I may be a sobbing mess, living alone for the first time in my life, grieving the loss of a dream, the kids? Well, the kids are all right.
And that's good enough for me.