I’m sorry. That’s what I told her.
And then I said I wasn’t. I made sure she knew we had nothing to apologize for. She didn’t. I didn’t. Because we’ve done nothing wrong.
And she looked up at me with confusion swimming behind a layer of tears that were readying themselves to drop. Unfortunately, she’s had that look before. Because this isn’t the first time.
So I hugged her. And then I hugged her again. Because I knew she had to go back to the thing that was filling her eyes with tears.
I had to watch her walk away, back to someone who is steadfast in completing a mission that involves gaslighting and manipulation – of a child…and unending vengeance against an adult.
I’m sorry, babe, that this is what you have to deal with. I know it. I know every maneuver. I know every tactic. I know every guilt trip, every lie, every unbridled rage.
Because I was you before he was forced to leave. That’s why I will make sure that you will never be the me I was.
I’m sorry it’s confusing. I’m sorry you’re told horrible untruths about me. I’m sorry someone wants to control every minute of your life. I’m sorry someone who says they love you always chooses to light a chaotic wildfire, for sport, rather than just…be normal.
But I won’t apologize for someone else. And I won’t apologize for me. And I won’t apologize for making sure that my kids know the truth, that they know their rights, that they know how it feels to be loved the right way – without agenda or condition – that they know who I am and that they know they never have to change themselves for someone else.
No matter who that someone else is.