For as long as I have been divorced I have felt an ache every time I part with my children. Now, that seems like a 'duh' thing to say, but really, it happens EVERY time we part--the ache. While there are many aspects to the pain of separation, the one I think I've just put my finger on is different from the others. You see, from the moment I drive one direction and my kids drive the other, I realize that I will have no unsolicited moments with them. Our communication is essentially stripped down from what most consider normal spontaneity to some form of 'you speak then I'll speak' communication. A phone call, an email or even a text message tag session does not allow for a long silent break while staring into the fire. They are all somewhat forced styles of communication with a petitioner and a respondent. It isn't really dialog, it's more like two monologues.
Tonight I had dinner with my boys and when they got into their truck and I got into mine it hit me as they continued their banter and I discontinued mine. What is also difficult about our going separate ways is the fact that two (or three or more) days full of life and moments and stories and seemingly meaningless funny things will happen to them and to me that will go unspoken the next time we meet. Oh, we'll hit the highlights I'm sure, but the best parts of life are rarely the things we typically call the highlights.
As I sit here writing this it is very quiet all around me save for the sound of the fire in the woodstove. What I wouldn't do to share this silence with my kids.