I wrote for this site earlier in the week about the way the world is delivered to our lounge rooms despite only a few minutes of footage being sourced. It circles around while you listen to presenters grappling to find new ways to offer snippets of information.
Turning off and walking away is sometimes the only option.
Turning around and explaining it to your kids is harder.
That night I sat and watched a singing show on the tele with all of my babies lined up on the lounge. A beautiful girl sang a Birdy song that my stepdaughter plays on repeat in our home. Even my husband can sing along now. We are the Von Trapps without the curtains.
In the montage, cleverly pieced together, before she took to the stage we saw her tell the story of her life. All 17 years of it. She talked about sadness and bullying and separated parents and then we got to see her mother standing side of stage willing that girl on.
As she cried. I cried.
I’m a dag for that sort of thing.
The stories of divorce that often don’t get talked about are the ones where one party never saw it coming. Where they tried their hardest to make life work. To be a good partner, a good parent, a good provider, a good worker. Despite all of these unspoken attempts there is still space, when those children are grown, for their sad stories to frame who they have become. I often fast forward my life in my head and worry that my girl will be standing on a podium somewhere telling the story of her early years and how it left a mark on her soul despite the fact that I fought hard for that not to happen.
I wonder how you remove those swords from your heart when you see your kids struggle with things that slipped through your fingers. Taking the guilt for something you are not guilty for is useless but inevitable.
I choose to tell my kids about the trauma that happens in their lives and outside of their home. I tell them in the simplest and most honest way I can. Every time something new happens we are reminded about the profound challenges we have in protecting ourselves. Both to our heart and our bodies.
We played that Birdy song in the car the next morning driving out to visit my oldest friend in the world. I looked back in the rearview mirror and saw my 7 year old singing it with as much passion as that girl had on tele the night before. Just without the right pitch. She was staring out the window with such clarity that I knew that despite those little scars she’d be just fine and that I’ll keep telling her that for as long as she needs to hear it. From side of stage or otherwise.
Whats your take on world trauma discussion at the dinner table?
For more resources jump on over to the fab Raising Children Network for more information.
Im linking up with Grace over here for FYBF