Hard to Leave – NICU Mommy Guilt – Leaving Older Siblings to Spend Time at the NICU

As a mom it’s easy to feel guilty about pretty much everything.

NICU brings mommy guilt to a whole new level. While I was aware of the blaming yourself for the whole situation; never did I think that I would feel guilty for spending time with my preemie.

NICU Mom Struggles - Leaving Big Siblings to spend time at the NICU

From the moment I leave in the morning, the time I spend cuddling with my little bundle, to the drive home… the guilt is there. This is not brought on by anyone but myself, but it is definitely there.

Because we homeschool, we are all used to me being with Sunshine and Mister Man 24/7. It’s not easy for anyone, especially the kiddos, to suddenly change that schedule and only have about 5 hours of quality time with me daily.

We are lucky enough that they get to spend the day with Daddy, but it is still a sudden change.

Sunshine is enjoying her extra time with Daddy and soaking up what little time I have with them as well. Mister Man, however, has taken it the hardest. I’m positive he is a Spiritual Child, so any change is harder for him especially when it is sudden, unexpected and daily.

Each morning, he grabs my hands and begs me to stay home with him or bring him to the hospital. This is a constant until I finally get in the car and drive away, waving to him in his window. Guilt.

There are some days when I will let him tag along for the day. He loves spending time with Sugar Plum and me, but it is difficult to talk with doctors and give Sugar Plum the attention she needs as well. So I try to limit this to one time per week. Guilt.

It’s been so difficult leaving him upset in the morning. I feel like I am letting him down, but I know his baby sister needs me as well and Daddy is there to help calm him down.

It’s a struggle all around. When I am at the hospital I am wondering what the kids are doing with Daddy and if I should be there more. When I am at home, I am wondering hot Sugar Plum is doing and if I should be with her more. It’s a double edged sword and it seems no one is winning the fight. Guilt.

I am hopeful Sugar Plum will be home soon and our lives can go back to what we consider normal. It’s always crazy, I don’t expect that to change, but at least we can be a family together instead of being so spread apart. Plus I love our crazy lives, I wouldn’t trade it for anything.

How about you. Did your other kids have issues with you leaving to spend time with your preemie? How did you handle the constant struggle?

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