Today my mom is telling me that M is has peed on the floor and pooped in a pull-up, both of which are things she never does anymore. She also took a longer than usual nap and “hasn’t been herself”. My mom feels that yesterday was too much for her, but I still stand by my decision to take M to her family gatherings for two reasons: 1) she seems to have fun while we’re there, and 2) I always stay there with her to make sure she feels secure and isn’t having a bad time. She did come tell me, after cake and ice cream, that she wanted to go “bye-bye” so we said our goodbyes and left. I never want her to feel like she has to stay, or when she’s older, like she has to go. I think keeping your commitments is important, but I also won’t force her if for some reason she doesn’t bond with them or feel comfortable there.
I know that it is hard for my baby to process her feelings, such big feelings for such a little girl. I feel worse that I’m at work today and not able to comfort her myself. But I also think that all toddlers have off days with potty training, and it was very tiring for her (no nap all day yesterday). My plan for next time is to make the visit a little shorter, and without the hour long drives to pick up and drop off her sister. When we see her sister next time I will try to have her come to our house, where M feels safe and secure. Also, next time we visit it won’t be a party so there won’t be 20-40 relatives everywhere at once. I think it will be better.
Parenting is hard, and open adoption parenting is really hard. I never know if I’m doing the right thing by my daughter or not, so I let my gut lead me. It’s gotten me this far.