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A, J & KK wrote:
I hope you know that I can relate 100% to every word you wrote about friendships. I still have a difficult time joining in- and then I feel guilty for not making it work. It's a vicious cycle of wanting, not-wanting and of course, our most reliable friend GUILT.
You never have to call back b/c I know you are always there for me AND I will hound you when I need to b/c that's what friends do :)
4/20/2009 7:48 AM CDT

Noel Dennehy wrote:
In reading your words that came from your gut and heart, I cried. You are so hard on yourself- so brutally hard. I hope in writing that incredible blog you have clensed some of your pain.
Love you and proud of you,
4/20/2009 9:00 AM CDT

Following Elias wrote:
A, I knew you'd understand so thanks for taking a moment to let me know you get it.

And Noel, I do feel a little lighter after writing this, like I peeled off an old crusty layer. Thanks for your words my sweet cousin.
4/20/2009 9:20 AM CDT

divaughn765607 wrote:
I'm glad you feel "lighter" for writing this. You really laid it all out there!
We, the preemie moms, failed. We did. 40 weeks eluded us, no matter how many times we're told it's nothing we did (or 1didn't do), it's not our fault, it was just meant to be. Something so simple, so natural, and we were found lacking. And yet, when we get bucked off our horse (or fall flat skating!) we have to pick ourselves up and get back after it. Our friends are our hand up. They're also our voice of reason. Your real friends, the ones who haul you back, should also be the ones to tell you, it's OK to let it go now. You've done your time, you've beaten yourself up royally for being scared, for feeling guilty, for getting sick of being the PT/OT/SLP and just wanting to be the mom. It's time to forgive yourself, Christy, it's OK to let it go now. You can no more blame yourself for your body's deficiency to carry to term than you can take credit for your height, so give it up. You've worked hard and turned the crappy hand you've been dealt into a winner, and you need to pat yourself on the back for that, finally.
I didn't have many friends even before Evan was born...and I still don't. I would really love to have someone in real life, who gets it. Honestly...you're the lucky one. :)
4/20/2009 10:05 AM CDT

campmom123 wrote:
I wish so much that you could go thru another birth and have a different experience. That has helped me. I relate to what you're saying about relationships being hard, I've had a hard time with making friends since becoming a mom too, and my children are, um, boring and straightforward :) Thank you for sharing your heart on this blog.
4/20/2009 3:53 PM CDT

meg36 wrote:
I can say that I relate to the lack of time and effort to maintain friendships, especially when your friends don't have kids etc...I also know the feeling of "what else could I have done". Being diabetic and having a 10.5 lb baby screams of not taking good care of yourself and your baby during pregnancy. Although my baby is fine, I had a scheduled c-section, tough recovery and feelings of what could I have done better to make the pregnancy "successful". The truth of the matter is I have two wonderful boys and neither one fits into the mold of "normal" but I don't think anyone really does.
4/21/2009 12:19 AM CDT

Deidremz wrote:
Christy, this is so beautiful, scary, honest, heartfelt. I'm not a preemie mom, or a mom at all and I'm horrible at friendships. The unreturned calls, the lack of contact, all of it. I know the feeling of being too hard on myself, of guilt, of brokeness, unworthiness, shame. The thing that saves me from myself, from my judgments, from my unattainable striving for perfection, my too high standards, are my friends. The ones who love me in-spite of all my "failings", or because of them. You've had a rough go kiddo, but I hope some day your failings become your accomplishments. I think that's when humans learn the most, when we fall. When we fall, how do we react, how do we judge ourselves, how do we get back up? I don't think you've failed, but that doesn't matter, it only matters that you think you've failed. I know you don't want to hear that Elias may of come early, in a traumatic way, in a way that scared you, pushed you, changed you. You could also look at it that he came, that your body made it long enough to birth a child. And you stayed, day and night in the hospital, pumping, dealing, facing the thing that most people would run from. You body may have not held him as long as you would have liked, but your spirit did, you were present when it mattered most, when he fought for life, and now as he makes his way forward. Did you have moments you wanted to run? Do you still have moments you want to run? Of course, who wouldn't. But you stayed. That to me is what you should judge yourself by, did you stand for your child when it mattered the most? Yes, you did, with grace, with integrity, with love.
4/21/2009 6:06 AM CDT

thdoy2 wrote:
Your feelings about home being a comfort zone are so true. My 7.5yo ds has multiple challenges and is is a sweet, inquisitive loving boy. Its only in public place with other children, do I realize how behind he is and that his future is uncertain. In my ds' case, he was born perfectly healthy and I didn't start start suspecting something was wrong until he was 18mos old. Even though I also have 2 NT children, it is easier to maintain relationships with other parents of challenged kids. They understand what you go thru on the bad days: when the kids have tantrums in public, have seizures,
or see your young one struggle to do what others do so easily. I love my son dearly and have tried everything to make his life better, I still feel guilty. I there still more that can be done? The process is tiring at times. The things that make it worthwhile are the love of all my kids and the accomplishments of my ds (all he does after much effort w/o complaint).
It is great that you are writing about it and bringing out into the open. I think a lot of people feel this way, but are in denial or shy to talk about it.
4/21/2009 10:23 AM CDT

Following Elias wrote:
Divaughn, thank you for writing. This is my process of giving it up, this is how I do it, but your right, its time to forgive, of all your words this particular line resonated the most: "You can no more blame yourself for your body's deficiency to carry to term than you can take credit for your height," So true.

Campmom, thank you for the second birth wish, I hold it too and i hope some day in the near future to get to share the process with all of you:)

Thanks Meg for letting me know that you can relate to the "what more?" questions and lack of time for friends, and yes, what is normal?

Oh DD, I think I'm going to use your comment as my next post you beautiful compassionate wise woman. I swear you were a Mama in a past life:)

And thdoy2, thanks for sharing a bit about your ds and your similar feelings about the safety of home or in the company of other parents of kids with special needs. When I am home with Elias I'm lost in his sweet world and everything is ok. Its so nice to know you get it. And your last line makes the side of me that cringes at my words feel better about sharing. Thank you.
4/21/2009 11:08 PM CDT

twxee wrote:
Wow. I can identify with so much of this, the feelings of being inadequate, of how could everyone else do it but not me? I got so depressed last night watching a show "I Didn't Know I Was Pregant." These women had no prenatal care whatsoever, but their children were perfectly fine. Me, I tried my best, thought I took good care of myself and my baby, and what happened?

My son was born with a rare syndrome for which they don't really know the cause. I have questioned over and over, was it something I did or didn't do? And I know, too, the feelings of wanting to run away, of not being strong enough for this. But we keep fighting through even when we think we can't do it anymore.

I know, too, the silence on the other end of the phone when you say something that is too uncomfortable even for your oldest friends. There is no acknowledgement sometimes, even, that I said something. It's just a change of subject. It's hard to keep up friendships like that, and it makes me want to only be friends with other parents like me.

I'm rambling enough, but I just wanted to let you know that there are some of us out here who DO get it. I love your blog. You are an incredible writer.
4/22/2009 9:49 PM CDT

Following Elias wrote:
twxee, I would have been depressed watching that show too in the same way I get furious at parents who have perfectly healthy babies only to abuse or abandon them. Thank you for writing, for telling me a little about your son and the feelings you've had, for wanting to run and fight and scream at the silence on the other end of the phone. I know it all so well. There are many a day when I only pick up the phone to call the one or two friends who really get it because they have "special" kids of their own, they are the only ones I can talk to even if I've only known them for a few years instead of twenty or thirty or...Thank you, you didnt ramble, you touched me with your shared words:)
4/28/2009 12:44 AM CDT

Parental Discretion Advised wrote:
This is such a real post, one that I think all parents can relate to. I thank God that my children were born full term and healthy, but I do the same thing you do, falling out of touch with family and friends because my life is so busy that I spend my free time playing catch up with my husband and my kids. I often feel like I don't know how to interact appropriately in large groups because I don't have a sense of belonging. That's one the biggest things I have to work on in being a parent.

Thanks for sharing your thoughts with us.
4/29/2009 7:59 AM CDT

Well i think that all have to do with the priorities of life of everyone... In this case your priority it's your son and that's it. You gave so much time to your friend's before the child so now it's time to take care of your own life and your child. It's a big change the turn of the life its like 360 degrees but the thing is keep forward.
Nice blog and article keep writing.

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