Now Reading
Summer Vacations Without Me

Summer Vacations Without Me

My letter to Brandon, my 14-year-old son, who is vacationing in Florida this week with his dad and stepmom.


I just got your pic from the beach in Florida. I am so glad you’re having fun, but this isn’t how I envisioned summers with you: you on vacation in Florida with your dad and me here in Missouri, you here for a few weeks and then in KC for a few weeks. Summers were always my favorite times with you when you were little. My work was always slower in the summer and that allowed me to truly spend lots of time with you at the pool, at the park, at Oceans of Fun and at the lake. I am so glad we had that time together. And now, on the weeks you are here in the summers, I cherish that time just as I do every other time you are with me.

But I still miss you when you’re gone. Early on when your dad left on the nights you were with him, I used to cry myself to sleep. I remember that first Halloween you weren’t with me. I skipped it. You were with your dad trick or treating in our old neighborhood doing what you had always done. That just didn’t seem right that you weren’t with me. I had many offers from friends to celebrate with them, but I decided that I would skip Halloween. I sat in my apartment, turned off all of the lights so no cute kiddo would come to the door and felt sorry for myself and sad that you weren’t with me.

I remember the Thanksgivings, the Christmas Eves and other special times in between. Alternating every other year isn’t what I want, but I know you need that time with your dad. It also just means you get to lengthen holidays and celebrate at both houses, which I know you aren’t complaining about.

This divorce has been hard on me, but I know it’s been equally hard on you. Although I am incredibly happy now with our new life, I want you to know that I too think divorce sucks.

Early on, I hated missing out on seeing you each day. It tore my heart up. At my core, my heart ached. I know you’ve said you hate the divorce, but I also remember what you said very early on. You actually wrote about it in a note to your 5th grade teacher. You said it would make you stronger. And I believe it has. It’s also made me stronger. As you are entering your freshman year of high school, I see how you’ve grown and how you’ve healed. I believe we are both still healing, but we are both stronger.

Yes, I still cry at times…the times in the summer where I don’t see you for two weeks. (Go ahead, roll your eyes at this point. I know you want to. You know your mom has always been an emotional person.) But I also know in my heart that you need this time with your dad. You deserve that.

And yes, there other things I hate about this divorce.

• I hate that you have to spend so much time in the car — up and down I-70.

• I hate having to drop you off at Sweet Springs on the weekend. The Casey’s in Sweet Springs…there’s nothing “sweet” about it. And I know you wish they had better food options.

• I hate not spending summer vacations all together as a family. But bonus for you, you get summer vacations with both families.

• I hate that I have to miss so much with you on weekends, on vacations and  on holidays. Just know that you are always missed but that I also hope you are having a great time with your dad.

• I hate that we aren’t a family like I had envisioned. But sometimes, life isn’t what we had planned. You have to learn to accept things, and then move on and find new happiness and your own new sense of normal.

• I hate that at times you feel torn. I know going back and forth between two households, with two parents, two step-parents, step-sisters and brothers and different sets of rules can be tough.

• I hate that at times, I have no idea where you are or what you are doing and that might even mean I might not know what state you’re in. I am your mom. I am going to wonder and at times, worry. I will always be the overprotective momma bear, so you will have to learn to deal with that. 🙂

• I hate that you have different rules at different houses. I know you feel like we have “too many rules” at our house, but someday, you will understand. And as I’ve said before, my job is to be your parent, not your friend. And that means setting boundaries and rules, having you meet certain expectations and teaching you how to be a compassionate, caring and loving young man.
And no matter how much I hate this divorce, I must learn to accept it and learn to just be grateful for the time that I do have with you and to relish every second even more. I will continue to do that , but it doesn’t mean that I will miss you any less when you’re gone. You are always in my heart and on my mind even on summer vacations in Florida without me. Have a great time at the beach.

I love you.

PS: Please call soon and send more pics.


What's Your Reaction?
Not Sure

404 Portland St, Ste C | Columbia, MO 65201 | 573-499-1830
© 2023 COMO Magazine. All Rights Reserved.
Website Design by Columbia Marketing Group

Scroll To Top