Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Not Good Enough

I can honestly say I have always done my best in being a mother to E. From the moment I knew I had conceived, I dedicated myself to him in a way that probably only another mother who has lost a child and been given another can understand.

But tonight, I realized it has never been good enough.

I tried so hard to stay pregnant. I followed doctors orders and then some - I did everything I knew how to do. But I still couldn't give him his 40 weeks. He got 29 - 3 more than his sister. Not good enough.

I tried to give him a family. I begged his father to try to make it work. I wasn't good enough. My best efforts at being a wife failed - he didn't want me. Not good enough.

And now. I'm trying my best to raise him on my own. But my best isn't good enough. On my own, I can't give him a home. Thank goodness I have family that is able to give us a place to live. All his clothes are donated by generous friends and family. I can't even nurse him - I have to pump. Not good enough. Not good enough. Not good enough.

And now I'm looking for a daycare for him. Of all the things that he needs that I simply cannot give him, I've ultimately failed in the most important one - a mommy. I have to pay strangers to parent him, to raise him, while I go better myself with an education that will hopefully enable me to give him some of the other things I don't have the ability to give him now.

It's not good enough. But I don't think I have any other choice.

I hope he will forgive me someday when he understands.


  1. He understands hun! You are NOT a bad mom. You are an absolutely amazing mom! Look at all you have done for him! You did everything you could to make sure he had a great start of life. You are pumping to give him the best food. You are there for him, and planning your future to take care of him.

    It isn't easy, even when you have a family to help. Don't doubt who you are. Don't doubt yourself. You are an amazing mother, and E is so very happy to have you as a mother. And we are all so proud of what you are doing.

    Big giant squishy hugs

  2. In my darkest moments, I have felt like you --but you are not what happens to you.

    It's not your fault that E came early -- you said you did everything you could to keep him inside -- and it was good enough, good enough to have a wonderful boy who is here with you.

    I haven't read your whole story, but you can't control someone else's actions. I don't know how many divorced people I know who did all they could, but the other person still acted like a jackass -- you can't help that.

    I've had to ask my family for help this year too -- money to keep us in the apartment I have. It's made me stressed and sad. But, family is there to help. You're doing what you can to improve your situation.

    Take care of yourself -- you deserve it and when you can, try to think that way. Best to you.

  3. You are excellent. Look at all the things you've given him:
    - You've given your son life. You made it all the way to 29 weeks!
    - You're giving him a family with you and his grandparents.
    - You're giving him a good example by going back to school.
    - You're giving him the opportunity to make new friends and be loved by other people by him going to daycare (what child EVER suffered from having too many people love him?! Don't call daycare parenting; E. KNOWS who his mommy is!)
    - You're giving him breastmilk, even though pumping is hard.

    So many places along the way you could have given up, had every right and reason to do so. But you haven't. That makes you a darn good mother. Don't forget that.

  4. Coming by from Cora's website... my mom told me this, and you have to believe it's true: You don't have to be the best mom. You just have to do the best job you can. If you do that, you'll be ok.


  5. You are good enough and don't you let anyone tell you any different. Being a single mom takes more strength than people know and if your baby is healthy and happy then you are doing a damn good job - all by yourself!

  6. It IS good enough! You are an amazing mom! Doing everything you do is so difficult! You're a single mom of a preemie who is going back to school to better yourself and who finds breastmilk so important that you're pumping just to get it to your son! Phew! You make me tired just thinking about it!

    Your son will know and understand that his momma loves him so much that she went on bedrest for as long as she could to keep him in as long as she could. She went back to school to make a better life for herself and him. He will know. He will understand. He won't be mad or upset, he'll be glad that his momma is so cool!

  7. Nicole, hang in there!!! I felt like you did about daycare for the longest time- I knew my baby was going to have to go to daycare at ten months. I cried my eyes out about it the first three months, and intermittently after that, so bitter that I'd be missing so many of his waking hours. As our money ran out, I started to realize I was doing more for our family by making money and keeping my stable job and its insurance... I grew to accept the daycare idea. Not happily, but... After just a week, my ten month old was happy at daycare. I rush from work to get him as soon as I can, though, bc I want to be with him so badly...
    Your bad feelings about leaving your son are real- I'm just saying, it's going to get easier, hang in there. The first ten or so times I drove away, I felt awful- then I thought of my coworkers who had had kids before me ,and remembered them feeling bad when they'd first come back to work... and I knew my bad feelings were normal- that helped a little. To know that the sick feeling in my stomach was one that other parents had handled before and everyone was now happy...
    I am sure I don't understand fully how you feel. But I do understand how painful it is to leave the most important person in your life with "strangers"- fortunately, they soon become loved caregivers- they are NOT raising your baby- they are taking care of your baby while you are away doing what is best for your baby and you long-term. Just keep telling youself that... some good feelings will replace the bad ones.... just hang in there. You might have a rough time, but you will come out of it.
    Just make sure you are totally comfortable with the daycare you choose- that is ESSENTIAL.
    I wish you the best of luck and I'll be thinking of you.
    I remember the first daycare I visited- I broke down crying almost immediately bc it did not look like the people were paying good attention to the babies. Fortunately, the next place I saw, I got a totally different feel... trust your gut with this. It will be correct.