They make you second guess everything. They make you sit back and mull over all of the events leading up to the need for said choice. They make you rethink everything you have ever done when it comes to making that hard choice and they leave you wondering if the choice made was the right one once you actually make it!
My hard choice is still a hard choice. I’m over the second guessing myself, because I know in my heart that I made the right one…but it is still hard emotionally. Emotionally, I am torn. I am torn between what I know is right and what I want. But what I want is not based upon anything other than soothing my own emotional discomfort.
My hard decision was this: allowing my son to stay with my parents when my little family moved from my parents home into our own home in a different school district and county. Truth be told, it was a positive decision for him. My son is happy. He is doing well in school. He is making good choices and learning to do things that he needs to learn. Why did I allow him to stay? Well, he finally felt settled into a highschool and I didn’t want to move him. He is surrounded by friends that are good influences. He gets to be the only child that he wants to be while still maintaining a relationship with his younger siblings. But most importantly, he is happy.
I, on the otherhand, am pretty torn up. I miss my kid. I miss his goofiness. I miss his jokes and telling me all about some new game he is into or how he is trying something new with his lizards. I miss him being there in the morning and at night. Being physically seperate from him for an extended period of time like this is not okay and I feel guilt. I feel massive guilt.
Honestly, the massive guilt is probably why I feel so crappy. I really am thrilled that my son is happy and healthy and doing well. I am so fortunate to have parents who love my son so much that they would be okay with him living with them on a permanent basis. But that guilt…it’s brutal. And it eats at me at every possible moment.
I feel guilt for not being able to provide for my kid the way he needs. I feel guilt for not having the kind of relationship with my son that I had hoped we would have. I feel guilt for allowing someone other than myself to care for him. He is my first. The one who made me a mother 16 years ago. A young mother. And I think that is where it all comes to a point. I was a young mother. Not all young mothers have the same relationship with their children as I have with my son. Some grow to be inseperable. My son formed that bond with my mother rather than me, I think, because I was so young when I had him. I was barely more than a child-not even a month past my 20th birthday-when I had him. I needed her more than I knew and being a mother was something I had not planned on doing until faced with it realizing I couldn’t NOT be a mother because of what was in my own heart versus what society expected of me. And so I had him and cherished him (I still do) and I made the hard decision to allow him to live away from me.
I couldn’t ask for two better people than my parents to teach him, though. I am beyond blessed that they love him so much and are willing to look out for him and teach him and help him to become a good man. There is no lack of appreciation there, or gratitude, for their selflessness and generosity.
But this is hard. Harder than I ever imagined it would be. And even though I know this is what is best for my child, and as a parent I want to do what is best, it still hurts.
One thought on “Hard Choices and Parental Guilt”
I always felt love and respect for my mom but we weren’t close. We got a lot more so when I had my son. With my son it would be nice to have the relationship I had pictured, but I know he thinks I’m great and he’s young yet. If your son is the kid you say he is, when he gets older and understands more fully your sacrifice, he will love you more and be more drawn to you. Just wait for it.
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