Childlike: “The Toughest Question”

This small script is written for the Daily Prompt: Childlike. The description is to explain your biggest regret – as though to a small child.

Child: “Mommy? Why aren’t you and our real daddy still together?”

I look at my child with sad eyes. I knew this day would come, but in my heart of hearts I was hoping that it never would. How was I going to explain this to him?

Me: “What do you mean, sweetie?”

I have to play it cool, make sure I know what he’s talking about. I have to try and not upset my child that I love so dearly.

Child: “When we were little you left our really daddy, right? And took us with you, right, Mommy? Why? Didn’t you love him anymore?”

Oh my poor, poor, sweet child. This is going to be so much harder on you than I wanted it to be. I’m sorry.

Me: “It’s not that, honey. Your real daddy and I, we… well, we didn’t get along anymore. Your real Daddy was being really mean to Mommy and he wouldn’t stop hurting Mommy. He even almost hurt you and Mommy didn’t want that at all. But, you see, honey, nobody would believe Mommy for a really long time.”

I can see my child’s confusion and the scared look on his face. He’s trying to figure out what happened. There’s more coming from him… and from me. I’m not sure if I’m prepared enough for this yet, but I have to try. For my child.

Child: “My real daddy hurt you, Mommy? And he… he almost hurt me? But… but why?”

Because he’s a mean asshole who never really loved us or wanted us in the first place… but I can’t tell you all of that.

Me: “I don’t know, honey. I really don’t know. I’m not sure if your real daddy ever really wanted us in the first place, sometimes.”

My little child looks so hurt right now. I wish it weren’t so, but I don’t want to lie to him. I know that I’m softening the truth and that’s almost as good as lying, but isn’t it better that he be prepared for the future?

Child: “R… really? B… but… Mommy?”

Oh, my baby. He’s about to cry. I never wanted to hurt you so.

Me: “Yes, honey?”

Child: “Do you still love me?”

I think I might cry. How could I ever have let him think I didn’t love him?

Me: “Yes, baby, I do love you and I always will. It’s your real daddy that I don’t love.”

I pull him onto my lap, hugging him tightly as tears threaten to spill over onto my cheeks. I don’t ever want him to doubt my love for him again. For him or his siblings.

My child looks up to me from the tight embrace; something has occurred to him again. I just smile softly down at him and nod, wordlessly telling him he can ask whatever he wants, no matter how painful it is.

Child: “If you don’t love our real daddy, how can you love us?”

I grab him and wrap my arms around him tightly. Tears start running down my cheeks; I can no longer hold them back. Oh, my poor, sweet child, how I love you. Please, please, please hear the truth in my words, feel them in my touch, in my embrace. I love you and your siblings… always and forever.

Me: “Oh, honey. I love you. I love your siblings and I always will. I… it’s just, I’m not sure if I ever really, truly loved your real daddy. So you see, sweetie, my love for you and your siblings has nothing to do with your real daddy. I love you all because you’re my babies and that will never change. I love you forever and always no matter what.”

Child: “I love you too, Mommy.”

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