Last night was very difficult, and leaves me depressed, even today. And I expect to be depressed about it for quite a while.
Something I've not talked about here, in order to preserve the privacy of other family members, is that my brother (the one who lives nearby, in San Jose) is going through a divorce. This started with a separation a little over a year ago, but is now getting into the final stages.
Later this week, my soon-to-be-former sister-in-law will be moving, with their children, back to Connecticut to be with her mother. As you are probably aware, Leslie and I do not have any children - our nephews are "our kids." These boys (ages eight and eleven, after their birthdays in the next few weeks) are extremely important figures in our lives.
And last night, we had to say goodbye to them. The eleven-year-old kept reassuring me that it wasn't "goodbye" but that we'd see each other over holidays, in just a few months, but I could see that he was having as difficult a time as I was holding back the tears.
When we tried to go back to the car to leave, the eight-year-old grabbed my hand and started saying, jokingly at first, "I'm not moving!" As he kept repeating it, his tone turned from laughing to a very serious shout.
I'm only the damn uncle, I don't get any say in what happens between them, and I've got no right to be mad at my soon-to-be-former sister-in-law for taking the kids away from me - it's my brother, the boys' father, who she's taking them away from - but I'm angry and depressed anyway.