No one called me Mom today
My kids are on vacation with their dad. The divorce agreement says they need to go. One week straight. Once a year. Every year.
No one called me “Mom” today.
I stand in the center of their room and take in the things that make a little girls room: stuffed animals, dolls, underwear, drawing on the wall, the puzzle pieces, the journals. It is no longer a mess to me. It is precious. Next week I will yell and scream and threaten them with ridiculous punishments if they don’t clean it, but at this moment I want to roll in it.
I wash their laundry.
I negotiate an offer, edit photos and take a long meeting. All the while my phone nearby. It doesn’t ring.
I clean out my car just to see what treasures of theirs I might find among the mess.
I clean out the refrigerator and mentally prepare a grocery list so I’ll have all their favorites when they return.
I use their bathroom whenever I have to pee.
I miss them.
I try to FaceTime them twice.
I take in the view of toys and socks and books spread across my apartment and feel an odd mix of melancholy and love and anxiety and I feel my eyes well up.
I check my phone again. Nothing.
I take a walk around the block past the bar, once, twice, three times, four times, five times, six times…. Watching the people drink and laugh and talk. I begin to cry.
I walk home and buzz for my boyfriend to let me in. And I sit in the chair and quietly look again at their things strewn about and I don’t pick them up because it keeps me close to them.
My boyfriend comes across the room, picks up a stuffed flower and presents it to me with a kiss. A tear falls down my face. He retreats in silence leaving me with the stuffed flower and a new tear settled on my cheek.
No one called me Mom today.
And it breaks my heart.