Baby Blankie – Mommy Guilt

The past 7 days have been full of change, some seemingly simple and others difficult and complex.

My youngest daughter is moving back home for five weeks. Having her come back home after being on her own is going to require an adjustment. She is used to doing things her way. I am set in my ways. My home, my house, my rules are not going to work though. One of the lessons I’ve learned since Connor died is to relax and be open to change. Change such as my daughter maturing, growing up and discovering who she is. Since moving out she is not the same person who left home. I am excited to see this young girl who has morphed into a woman.

Another part of my daughter moving back in, is changing bedrooms. My home is set up with the master suite; bedroom, large walk-in closet, and bathroom on one side of the house. The kitchen and family room separate the second bedroom, bathroom, and office. When she was here the first time, I had to walk from my office past her bedroom to get to my own bedroom.

Unintentionally I would disrupt her sleep with lights glaring, opening, and closing doors and walking past her room. I decided to do something different when she moved back in. I moved out of the bigger more spacious master bedroom into the smaller one close to the office.

Physical change – just across the house requires me to adapt. I am adjusting just like I realize that life has moved forward since Connor died. I have accepted this situation and making the best of it.

The last thing I moved from the master bedroom is my cedar chest. I’ve had it for 35 years and it has been a catch all for stuff. Lots of stuff. As I dug through the memorabilia, I found a stack of Doctor Seuss books that I was saving for grandkids. It is now time to bring them out.

There were several baby blankets neatly folded and tucked away. One was mine that was hand quilted from many, many years ago. The other blanket belonged to Connor.

I remember putting his blankie in the cedar chest because I thought he would lose it, or he would wear it out. I took it away before he had outgrown it. I recall thinking that I could give it to him later when he had kids. I figured he would get a kick out of it, having something so precious that he could share it with his kids. That later never came. He died before I got the chance.

A huge wave of guilt overcame me. Guilt of taking away Connor’s blankie. The one that comforted him when he was hurt or sad. He was devastated when I told him it was lost. I couldn’t tell him I was saving it for the future. He was too young to understand mommy logic.

I sat on the closet floor with the contents of the cedar chest surrounding me and bawled. I hugged his blankie to comfort me, much like Connor used to. Those memories of taking his blanket 25 years ago hurt. It was a new hurt because the last time I paid attention to Connor’s blankie was before he died. The blankie, as a simple object, now holds new meaning. It’s yet another example of dreams that will never come to fruition.

As tough as it is, I am working on accepting what was, what is and what can be.

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