I'm leaving, on the next plane
I don't know when I'll be back again
Kiss me and smile for me
Tell me that you'll wait for me
Hold me, like you know I'll never go
Even though you know I will
I'm a travelling man
moving through places
space and time
got a lot of things I got to do
but God willing I'm coming back to you
~ Mos Def "Traveling Man" Remix
i'm leaving on a jet plane tonight to see beloved.
while i LOVE that i get to spend a few days with him, the hassle of traveling with a 2 year old tries my nerves. i have to pack so many things to keep him busy, clean, and fed. i have to make sure he keeps his feet off of the seat in front of him, and hope that he doesn't throw a tantrum and scream at the top of his lungs. basically, i have to make sure he's not THAT kid that everybody rolls their eyes at. not to mention my family constantly looks at me sideways when i say, "i'm going to my 2nd home." although they are supportive of our relationship, they still don't understand why i need to visit so much ("didn't you just go last month?" they ask). i look at my little one, and i ask them, how can i not?
beloved & the munchkin barely know each other. no matter how many trips we make, it doesn't make up for the months or weeks that they don't get to see each other. you know how kids are: they don't know what they don't see, and the last thing i want our son to do is look at beloved like a stranger. i know it probably won't really CLICK until he's a little older that 1)he has a REAL daddy that doesn't just live in pictures and 2) daddy is just away & will be home...soon(?). but i'm trying to do all that i can to reinforce their relationship now.
our visit is coming at the perfect time. not only am i off for spring break, but beloved is having some issues. since his sentencing in Nov. 2006, he's been in two mental health hospitals, and for the last few days (or a week, i'm not sure), he's been on "observation." i don't really know what that means considering they won't tell me anything over the phone (ugh!), but i know that something isn't right. he's been increasingly depressed and a little distant as of late. when we talk all he really says is that he misses me & really misses our son, but not much else. seeing him face-to-face and being able to hold his hand and show him that we are HERE, will (hopefully) go a long way to ease his nerves. i can't even begin to imagine what he goes through. the physical situation is enough to break most people, not to mention the psychological turmoil he puts himself through (feeling increasingly upset with himself for putting us through this). i can't imagine having so much alone time just to sit and think about what i should have done & how my life could have been different. that is a mind killer.
whenever you see articles or studies on the prison population, they deal mostly with the numbers, not the families behind those numbers. i wish someone would come along and put a face, a voice, a story with the facts. perhaps then we would not just say, "wow, that sucks" when we hear of the alarming numbers of people being locked up. maybe then we'll try to come up with solutions.