I am a good mom, despite my every other weekend status.
Bed time is usually the hardest.
Every night used to be full of stories and laughter, cuddles and kisses. Followed by all excuses imaginable to stay up just little bit longer.
I am thirsty, mom.
Can I sleep with you, mom?
I used to be a mom. Every single night I was a mom to the beautiful boy I brought into this world. But I never truly appreciated being a mom until it was essentially taken away from me. Until I became a "weekend and holiday" mom. Until I lost custody of my seven-year-old son.
I never realized how much the late night talks or the good morning cuddles meant until they only came every other weekend. Now, as I lay in my cold empty bed, I miss the nights and days when I was a mother. When somebody depended on me daily for just about everything. When everything made sense.
I miss the dancing and the smiles.
I miss it all. The good, the bad, the ugly.
I used to be a mom. It defined me; it inspired me. Being a mom was the best part of me, now I don't know who I am anymore. Who I am without my son?
Sometimes I wake up at night, sobbing into tear-soaked pillows at the weight of how much it hurts to miss him. To miss the way he kicks me in his sleep. To know that when morning comes, his smiling face won't be there to start my day.
I breakdown in the shower, trying to catch my breathe when I realize it will be thirteen days before I see my baby again. That I will barely speak to him. That I will not know how his day was or be able to cheer him up if someone was mean to him at school.
I have tried so very hard to accept it and tell myself that I am still a mom. I am a good mom, despite my every other weekend status. If this is what's best for him, I should embrace that, right? I should be happy. But it doesn't get easier. It never hurts less. His absence is noticed and felt and I f*cking miss him all the time.
As I prepare to welcome a new little boy into this world, my heart constantly aches for my firstborn. Who first called me mom and showed me what unconditional love really was. Who has given my life meaning in the darkest of days. Who is my best friend, my rock, my everything.
I will never stop fighting for him. I will never stop trying to be the best version of myself for him. I will never stop loving him or missing him.
I want to be what is best for him. Because that is what we both deserve.
This article was originally published at Emily Is Fearless. Reprinted with permission from the author.