Wednesday, September 14, 2011


Megan watched him drive away. 10 years of marriage fading away with taillights in the night. Just like that. No warning. No explanation. Jason just left. Leaving his five year old son, a crying heap in her arms. The man she loved had left a long time ago now the man she married was following suit.

She knew Jason was unhappy. She knew he was struggling with so many things; marriage, work, his faith and the loss of his parents two years ago. They had tried therapy, prayer, and constant arguing but nothing seemed to bring him back to her.

When Megan got home that night, she found him loading his car. The ache in her gut began immediately. There were no planned trips especially that would take that much luggage. What gave it away though was that he was loading up the Civic. He never drove that car. They had been trying to sell the car for over a year. It wasn't worth much, but she was sure it could get him where he needed to go.

Megan stood there holding Elijah, staring into Jason's vacant eyes. His son, screaming and crying for his daddy. Jason barely looked at him. She wanted to find understanding behind his eyes but what laid there was an emptiness. He had nothing left to give her. She would even go as far to say he had nothing left to give himself.

He handed her a large manila envelope, lightly kissed his son on the forehead, climbed in the car and drove away.  Megan stood there, ice and heat sliding through her bones.  Elijah's cries were softening to a whimper that said much more then its volume.  His little heart was breaking.  He knew this time was different.  When Jason went on business trips, he'd sit Elijah down and explain where we was going and for how long. He'd give him a map and a few pictures of the town he would be visiting.  He'd bring Elijah a small toy that he could hug in his daddy's absence as well as his favorite watch.  This way Elijah knew that his dad would be back to not only claim his watch but his son.  Jason would ask him to protect the watch and his mommy from harm.  This gave Elijah something to plan for and do while his dad was gone.  This time was different. Elijah didn't have a toy, his dad's watch, pictures or even an explanation.  He just had tears and good-byes.  Elijah knew his dad wasn't coming back.

Megan carried her broken-hearted little boy and the divorce papers inside not sure what to do with either.  She kicked the door shut behind her then paused in front of the door as she her the crack.  As the door slammed shut so did her heart.  The rush of pain and confusion fell on her with a weight she had never felt.  Leaning against the door, she slid down onto the floor, cradling her son close.  The two cried together, holding each other for hours.  Megan, between waves of panic, would reassure her son that he'd be OK.  That the two of them would fight together to stay strong.  She whispered words of encouragement and love into her precious son's ears, reminding him how much he was loved. Not only by her but by his father.  She couldn't answer if or when he'd come back but she knew Jason loved his son.  He had just lost his love for himself and the God who he had trusted in.

It took Megan weeks to find her footing enough to leave the house.  She put all of her energy into parenting Elijah, not allowing him to see how upside down their lives really were.  It broke her heart the most in the mornings when he'd wake up and ask if daddy came home.  She'd have to relive the heartbreak in his eyes all over again as he morned the loss of his father each time.

At week 6, Elijah finally stopped asking about his father.  Megan sat down gently on his bed, massaging his little back while he slowly woke up.  He rolled over, his eyes opening at their own pace. Just as Megan expected him to ask where Jason was, he sat up slowly, hugged his mom and said "I like waking up to your face, Mommy."  Megan's heart broke into hundreds of pieces.  She puled Elijah into her lap and held him close to her, tears falling freely.

Megan had never understood the resiliency of kids until that moment.  Her son's heart had been hopeful and expectant but when reality gave way he let it go, knowing at least one person would always be there for him.  She vowed to herself that she would never let her son feel anything less then completely, 100%, unconditionally loved.  She didn't want to make up for where Jason failed, but she never wanted Elijah to ever doubt her love for him.  Her prayer was going to be, that the day Jason drove away would be nothing more then a blip on the screen.  It may not be a realistic dream for Megan, but she was going to strive for it just the same.

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