Slice 127 of 365
It’s another TV memory day. Caught an episode of Criminal Minds this morning where Hothcner’s ex-wife is brutally murdered while he and his team are listening on the phone and while his young son is hiding in the house.
He eventually gets to the house, too late to save the mother of his child, but in time to save his son and catch and kill the serial killer. Now the brutality of the death isn’t even close to a comparison of my experience but what gets me about this episode is when he finds his son hiding and he’s safe.
The face he has, knowing that he has to tell his child that his mother is no longer there. He has a small amount of power right there to keep his son’s innocence for just a little while longer.
Wanting to stop time right then, so you don’t have to tell them. Seeing their face, their small world still intact until the words come tumbling out of your mouth that will shatter their little lives forever.
Lisa died in the middle of the night, so even though they were asleep the boys had six or seven hours of reprieve. With Stacy I only had about 15 minutes of lead time.
I don’t really know what they remember but I remember it vividly, both times.
With Lisa, the boys had some idea she was sick but I don’t think they ever really had a grasp of what was really coming. I hated that I had to be the one to tell them. I didn’t want that memory in their heads.
With Stacy, the boys were older and could read body language and facial cues better, I think they had an idea that something bad had happened but Becca was young and just reminded me of the boys all over again. Again, I didn’t want to be part of that memory but the choice wasn’t there to make. It had been made for me.
Having to do it once was hard enough and there I was doing it a second time. I didn’t want the responsibility, the pressure, to have to change three children’s lives, twice. It’s an overwhelming emotion that stays with you. No one should ever have to do that.
Then the impossible questions start.
Where is she?
Did it hurt?
Did she just go to sleep?
When is she coming back?
So many nights they would crawl into my bed after I’d already spent hours tying to get them to sleep and having to tell mommy stories until they finally fell asleep and I could go fall apart.
I think maybe I need to avoid TV for the next couple of days.