Being that Perfect Parent
Everything you have to give and what it'll mean in the long run
We all meet those "bumps" in the road.
How do you know that you're doing it right?
Being a mom was not always something I wanted out of life. I loved other people's kids, they weren't permanent, and I didn't have to wipe their buts well. Then I became pregnant with my first daughter, Macy. At that time in my life I was a mess, and during my whole pregnancy I struggled deeply with depression. I had no faith in myself. I constantly told myself I couldn't do it, and at the time I really believed it. I wouldn't say I had the best childhood growing up, it wasn't awful but my mom was often cold towards me. I think maybe that's the reason I told myself that I never wanted to have kids. I considered adoption and I considered that idea that maybe I could do it. When my daughter was born I was so happy she was here, but my struggles with life and myself were still present.
Right after my daughter was born my mom passed away, me myself, only age 22 and I just had a baby, then I got the call that my mom isn't doing well and I need to drive 9 hours to say my goodbyes. My daughter being so new, I made the decision not to bring her to travel the 9 hours to say goodbye to my mom and for my daughter and her to meet for the first time. When we arrived we went to see my mom and the first thing out of her mouth was, "Where is my baby?" That is a moment as a parent, you doubt your decision making abilities. I have a hard time with that situation. I think to myself that one day my oldest daughter will ask me why she never met my mom. I haven't quite decided how I'll go about explaining that to her but I think I have some years before she really understand.
When my daughter was born I was not living with nor in a relationship with her dad. Long story short we were a fling and we'd not planned having that type of relations before I got pregnant so during my pregnancy and a few months after she was born I lived with my at the time boyfriend. A boyfriend that I had dated for about 7 years of my life and lived with for almost all those 7 years, after she was born and after my mom died; my "at the time" boyfriend (the one of 7 years) and his family and I decided it was time for the first camping trip of the year. So we last minute packed up the motor home and headed out to Topaz Lake, we swam all day, drank cold beers, sat around the fire; just as we did every summer. That night we all laid down and went to bed. My daughter was about 3 months at this time (always fun camping with an infant). Around midnight maybe my ex-bf's dad had awakened and threw up and wasn't feeling well. His wife suggested maybe going back to town and going to urgent care, but he refused and went back to bed. I whispered to my ex bf, that maybe he should go convince his dad to go, just in case but he knew as well as I that his stubborn dad wasn't going to go. So we went back to sleep. At around 3 AM everyone in the motorhome was awakened by the screaming and yelling of my ex's mom—she was screaming his name over and over again. Next thing I know my ex and his younger brother are pulling him onto the floor and my ex's younger brother started CPR as my ex's mom was on the phone with 911. It felt like an eternity before someone showed up, god it was the longest wait.
We all sat outside in the pitch black crying. I'm not a religious person whatsoever, but I prayed in that moment. I prayed to my recently deceased mother, asking her to let him pull through. But we all already new that by the time the ambulance got there it would be too late. Upon arrival they gave him CPR and chest compressions but like I said we all already new. By the third month of my first child's life, I lost my mom and a man that raised me from 15 to what was then 22 years old. A man that loved my daughter so much, even though she was not his son's child. He loved her and he was her papa. At that point I began to question my entire being and purpose of life. Was I doing the right thing by staying with my ex? Should I let him go and let him have fun and party and do all the things people our age do when they don't have kids? So many questions, so much heartache and so much realization. My ex and I were that couple that everyone thought would get married and always be together. For the longest time, I contemplated whether or not us staying together was right still. We had built a relationship off partying and fighting, and we had over time become so toxic to each other. Two months or so after his dad passed I finally made a decision to move out, I knew that he wasn't going to understand, I knew that he was going to freak out, I knew the bullshit he was going to pull. It wasn't just me that I had to think about anymore. I had to do what was right for my daughter now, and moving out of my ex's house was what I thought was for the best. I think that we'd all endured so much heart ache and sudden change that it was hard on everyone. I struggled for weeks prior, trying to decide how to leave, or if I should even leave. I new that he was going to do what he did everytime. I'd tell him it was over basically and then he'd get angry and we'd scream and yell and fight, then I would leave and then he'd come find me and tell me to come home. We'd always act like nothing ever happened and we'd just "forget all about it." Not this time. I wasn't sure if I was making the right decision or not, that was one of the hardest decisions I've made in my life thus far. It's been about three years now, and I strongly believe out of a lot of the tough decisions I've had to make in my life, that this one was one of the better decisions I've made.
I'm nowhere near a great mother. I've made a lot of stupid decisions with and without my kids in mind. I've second guessed myself a trillion times. I've hated myself for things I've said out of anger. I constantly have to remind myself that no one is perfect, that every parent has their flaws. I try to always remember that the world doesn't just go on pause, when I am having a bad day. Unfortunately, that is not the world we live in. I've questioned just about every serious decision I've ever made when it comes to my children. I stress on the stupid things and overlook important things. Down the road I hope to look back and realize that I was a decent parent, and that I made at least a few good decisions for both my daughters. I hope they remember certain things we as parents do to try and raise our kids to be dignified and well behaved. Hopefully one day they will thank us for all the silly or great decisions we as young adults today make, to try and help them grow to be young, successful adults.
Don't doubt yourself when it comes to parenting, you can make mistakes. In the end you will find your way, and usually, if you follow your heart. You'll make the right decision. Don't second guess yourself; you know if something doesn't feel right. Life is short, don't wish you would've or could've cause that'll do you no good later on. Trust yourself, always.