Sunday, 17 August 2014

Why was DeeQ crying?

 


Why Was DeeQ Crying?


I quietly opened the door to find them both cuddling on a single bed, my favourite boys in the world - a father and a son. But before I had a chance to make my presence known I heard a sob, a doleful sob that resonated in my heart.

DeeQ was crying whilst his daddy was comforting him. He was missing his mummy who passed away a couple of years ago. Only 20 minutes earlier DeeQ was laughing his head off.

It all started with us all arriving home late after a party. Instead of being a responsible adult and getting the boys into bed, for some reason (which is no other than an undisclosed amount of good old Sauvignon Blanc) I found myself in DeeQ’s bedroom laughing and making jokes with him and his little brother.

A few minutes later I was giggling and sliding down the stairs on my bottom making everybody laugh. All the boys quickly joined in, sliding down on their fronts scraping their arms and legs leaving them with painfully looking carpet burns. But in spite of self-inflicted injuries, we were laughing so hard that my stomach ached.

And now DeeQ was weeping uncontrollably, pressed against his dad’s chest. Something about sliding down the stairs triggered a memory that was long forgotten.

Hot silent tears were rolling down my cheeks too and my heart went out to the boy who became my family, who, by the twist of fate, became my stepson. My instinct was to move forward, get into bed with them to give him a cuddle, but I simply couldn’t move. I froze on the spot unable to even breathe, let alone move.

I knew what DeeQ was going through. The pain of losing his mummy mixed with unexpected memories he thought he long buried, was tough enough to swallow. But adding a twist of daddy moving on with someone else and a splash of a girl in the house who was not his mummy made it into one hell of a cocktail, especially for a boy on a verge of puberty.

My memory drifted to 2006, to many nights that I spent in my own single bed crying myself to sleep. When my mum died just a day before my birthday, four months before my wedding and my dad remarried within a matter of months, I was inconsolable too. 

The longer I stood there, the more I felt like an intruder witnessing a private moment of grief between a boy and his father. And for some reason I suddenly felt guilty, and not just for being there but for being alive. The boy was crying his heart out, missing his mummy terribly while I was there, healthy and alive, and not his mummy.

I silently shut the door - the third important man in my life, Little Dude, was calling me to say good night to him. He kissed me on the lips and said he loved me, our little bedtime routine, and then he kissed a photo of his mummy above his bed. Somehow in his little heart he found a place for both of us, his mummy and his stepmum.

As I got in bed by myself that night I couldn’t help but worry, would DeeQ ever be really ok with having a stepmum and not resenting the fact that his mummy was gone and I was there? He never said anything to me but I knew the ropes of losing a mum and dad moving on all too well.

Within seconds I fell asleep. That night I dreamt about DeeQ and his mummy, about my mum; the carousel of my memories tangled up with DeeQ’s stories – it was a night of broken sleep and raw emotions.

In the morning DeeQ told me he came looking for me much later that night, wanting a cuddle, only to find me asleep. I must’ve been doing something right, I thought, silently breathing a sigh of relief, as I a hugged my boy burying my face in his hair, hiding a smile.