My dear sweet little girl turns 9 next month. She was only 20 months old when my ex left. Over the years this precious little girl has experienced tremendous turmoil in her life. The man that my ex left with turned out to be very abusive physically and emotionally, not only to my ex but to my children. My kids would tell me stories of his abuse, how they would hide together under the bed every time this man became angry, which apparently happened a lot.
When my kids were little, I used to be frustrated at finally getting to spend time with them and they would crash! Within 20 minutes of my getting them they would be fast asleep. This happened nearly every single time for two plus years. I longed to play with them and to be able to spend quality time, yet each time they would come over they would spend the vast majority of our time together sleeping. I would normally sit on the couch holding both of them, one in each arm for hours as they peacefully slept. This was difficult for me to have my time with them spent sleeping.
I spoke with a friend who is a psychologist to express my feelings about this. She informed me that my kids were falling asleep so quickly because they felt peaceful and safe with me. Their lives were in such disarray and turmoil that they were exhausted when they came with me, the peace they felt allowed them to relax and fall asleep. She told me that they needed this time desperately. I was relieved to know why, yet heartbroken to think that they would be living this way with their mom.
My daughter was being potty trained at the time that my ex left and married him, as you can imagine, all the changes and turmoil led to many accidents for her. Bridger expressed their fear to me again one night and told me how Londyn had been spanked hard bare bottom for having an accident and how Wade had yelled and yelled at her until she was too scared to even move.
I confronted them on their doorstep that night regarding this, I had called the police and met them at the house. The police simply told me it was a civil matter and I needed to go to court again to resolve this issue. Again I headed into the courtroom to protect my children from this abuse. The judges ruling was appalling. Since it was not her mother abusing her she would not change the custody and I was reprimanded for getting the police involved.
Needless the say my children have experienced much pain and heartache over the years as a result of the many men my ex has brought in and out of their lives. This has created, especially for my precious little girl, an emotional distance from people. I see the walls she has built to protect her tender little heart. I see glimpses of hope in her eyes as time goes by, especially during the times when she is with us for longer than a weekend. Those few opportunities each year that they get to spend more than 2 days in a row in our home seem to open her up where she can express her love.
Londyn is my Angel With Broken Wings. My heart aches each time I see her struggle to say I love you to anyone. Her heart is so incredibly large, she is the first one in the family to help others. She shows her love through her actions each and everyday of her life, yet the emotional sharing and connections she struggles with deeply as a result of what she has experienced.
We try so hard to carefully help her take down her walls. My wife and I focus on her needs as they relate to feeling unconditionally the love and acceptance and safety in our home. As she gets older, she is able to more effectively express her thoughts which have led to a greater opportunity for those moments when she will share her feelings. I make certain that the days when Bridger has practice and Londyn does not have cheer when they are with me that time is sacred time for Londyn and I. We have our regular daddy daughter time when it is all about her and her needs. I wish deeply that I could have more opportunities to spend one on one time with her.
A couple of times each month I will have lunch with her at school. Each time I walk into the school cafeteria her eyes will light up and she scoots over to make room for me at the table with her friends. It warms my heart with each opportunity to sit at the table with her and her friends as they talk about school and their recess plans. The hugs in school when I leave are getting stronger and stronger. She will whisper in my ear each time I love you daddy, thank you! I pray that these little things that I am able to do will help to heal her broken wings.
I dream of the day when I can see my little girl soar. When her tender heart has healed enough to be able to fly on her own. When sharing her feelings and emotions with those she loves comes naturally. In the meantime, I watch her put on a brave smile everyday as she tries to conquer the world, while knowing how much her tender heart aches. She is a Princess, with a heart of gold and a broken wing.