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  1. Wonderful blog post! It got me a bit misty. I am not sure if we’ll have another child, but if we do, I hope she’ll be a big sister like Abby.

    1. Jessica, thank you for your comment. I hope you are enjoying your time with that precious little baby! I’m loving all your photos…especially the Geddes style ones, oh my goodness!

  2. Lori Anderson says:

    oh. my. word. i am leaking all over the keyboard. what a beautiful post. i have had similar discussions and decions to make with mine. shared time is really hard, and i can’t quite wrap my mind around the added difficulty of missed time with a treasured baby sister.

    1. Thank you, Lori. It means a lot to hear that from someone who’s BTDT, you know?

  3. Christine Bacas Tutor says:

    Wow, I’m sitting here wiping tears. So touching. Bottom line is that Abby is blessed to have two wonderful families who love her. You can never go wrong having a lot of family (I grew up the opposite – with just my parents and brother, while other family were miles away). Looks like you guys are going through the hardest part, getting used to the routine. I can’t say it will get easier, but you’ll see the benefits (we do) as she gets older. This weekend my older two kids will be spending the night with their grandparents and cousins. They’ve been doing it since they were born, but it never gets easier, especially since my youngest doesn’t get to go. However, when my older two return, it’s like a mini reunion, and they get to share all the cool experiences they had. I truly believe it makes them (and us) better people.

    1. Chris, you are right. Many other kids in Abby’s situation are not as lucky as she is. I am so glad for that. Thank you for helping me to see the positive in a tough situation! The mini reunion every other week *is* awfully nice. :-)

  4. Lacy, your awesome comment got marked as spam because of the link…so sorry! I think I fixed that now.

    Thank you so much for sharing this on Twitter. :-) I really appreciate that.

    The link worked for me just now, so hopefully it worked itself out? This technology stuff is for the birds!

  5. Lemon Lime Adventures says:

    This is so good. I know exactly how it feels. I feel so broken every time my guys leave me. You have spoken this beautifully!

  6. Devany LeDrew says:

    (tears for you and for her)
    I love your raw, honest, BEAUTIFUL writing!

  7. This had me tearing up.. My ex has every weekend and my s/o has his boys every weekend. So either way our house is always full.

  8. Hi Kelly… It’s almost weird reading your post as that was me (only as the Stepmom) 6 years ago. I definitely couldn’t hold back the tears remembering the special weekly lunches and my step-daughter being held by her kindergarten teacher during reading time (right after leaving lunch). She got better with it, and I have cherished our weekly lunch for the last 6 years. She started middle school 3 days ago and it’s hard not being allowed to come in. But both her and my step-son have always been adamant about me or there Dad coming to lunch EVERY week. They didn’t let it slide LOL. I also can completely relate with you new baby. My twins are 5 months old and we have a 4 yr old toddler. I thought it would be easier for my girl to have siblings with her all the time. But it will never replace the relationship she has with her big bro and sis. And every other Fri-Wed my heart breaks because she misses them. So not only do we ache and feel like our world changes when they’re gone, but my little girl has started to get emotional about it. Fortunately, God has worked tremendous miracles in our hearts and their mom’s heart and we all get along now (she’s one of my closest friends!). It still doesn’t fill the empty spot when they’re gone. They play sports several days through the week so it’s awesome being able to see them there, too. My heart goes out to you! Feel free to talk anytime (

  9. This was such a vulnerable and important(!) post. You and Abby sound mighty lucky to have each other.

  10. craftsmumship says:

    Hi Kelly, I’m doing your course and clicked the link to this post. So beautiful and emotional how could I not cry. Beautifully written and a fantastic example of emotion and connecting. Hugs xo

  11. Stacy of KSW says:

    and now I’m crying. Thanks for sharing this one and what a sweet, smart, brave little girl you have.

  12. Oh man, my eyes are leaking. Can’t imagine how hard it must be

  13. I am doing the every other week during the summers and it is incredibly hard to do so week after week, I see it hard for her. I am not sure I see justification in all of it but I am trying and I know this story all too well as I do have lunch with my only child once a week and I too think she feels this way. Bless you and thank you kindly for your story.

    1. There is justification. A child needs both of his or her parents equally even if the parents can’t be together. You divorced your ex, but you both didn’t divorce your children.

  14. Scott Schnipper says:

    I must’ve missed the point of the headline as I had hoped there was a balm, or perhaps a practical tip, for staying connected with my 8-year-old when he’s off with mom for five days at a stretch.

    And the phone, Hang Out and email go unanswered. He’s in third grade and I’m unaware of parents being invited to elementary school lunch once weekly and, the hateful other partner, would no doubt claim it somehow violated the custody agreement.

    So, while the tale of Abby and Bailey is loving, the post never really got round to addressing other tricks to cope. Alas.

  15. Tear Tear… Man, I don’t read blog posts often but the title drew my attention. I have felt this way for a couple of yrs now and it hasn’t gotten much easier with time. At least it sure doesn’t feel easier. But it is refreshing to know that I was not alone in this pain. And that I was not the only parent dying to see their child on their off week. I still find it very painful to feel like my ex husband and his current wife go out of their way to ensure I don’t get to see him as much and what not but I pray that this will soon get better.

  16. Courtney Williams says:

    This is me! I have a 10 year old boy who is the BEST most well behaved child in every aspect of his life! We have week on week off and I now have a 9 month old daughter. And it kills me that he will miss out on so many things that we do with our family when he is not there!

  17. Thank you for sharing this! I’m struggling to co-parent with my boys’ father, who is a covert narcissist. He has been given more visitation time and yet, is taking them less. On one hand, I am grateful that he is taking less time to mentally abuse them, but my heart aches watching them struggle with his absence.

    This post was a great example of who I can be for my boys, and something I can do to encourage them along the way! I’m sorry you’re going through this. Thank you for sharing your vulnerability in such a way that inspires others.

  18. Hi, I’ve read these several times and they are beautiful and always make me cry. I understand everything. I am a mother of 4 and my oldest son is your Abby. I share custody with his father and missing him is one of these hardest things I go through every week when he’s not with me. I understand that “extra dose”. I’ve seen the tears and I’ve tried hard to hold back the tears at the school too. No one really understands- thank you for putting this out there. I truly, truly appreciate it. You are a good Mom.

  19. Bronwyn Taylor says:

    I really needed this post and the other one you have on missing Abby. I’m struggling so much, literally been crying for 2 hrs because I dropped my almost 4 yr old daughter off at dayhome this morning and wont see her until the end of the week. I’m pregnant with a little girl and terrified my older girl will feel replaced and get less attention…and time….the time I cherish too much sometimes. Thank you for this.

  20. Karrie Hill says:

    I realize this is a few years old but I stumbled upon it. Every other week I feel like a childless mother. Devastating, I hurt so bad and I feel like I’m scarring my children. They have a good home life at their dad’s and at my place but this every other week stuff kills me. All these years later how are you and Abby adjusting?

    1. Karrie, I’m so sorry to hear you’re struggling with this too. We’ve been having this weekly schedule for 7 years now, I think. I would love to tell you it gets easier. It has gotten less heart-wrenching, but it still hurts. We’re used to the schedule now, but sometimes it’s just hard. We try to Facetime as often as possible when we’re apart, and that helps. I wish there were a magic fix for everyone in this difficult situation. Sending you strength for the hard times. <3

  21. I just read your blog and I’m in tears. Although the I feel I’m in tears quite often. I’m in a custody battle now and I have been a stay at home mom to my little girl for two years. I am facing the next step which will mean beginning to have to be without her 2 or 3 days at a time and my soul is crushing. When I think of it all it just is too awful to bare. My heart breaks in a million Pieces for my little girl. It doesn’t seem fair at all. Why do we have to be separated. Why should she not be able to see her mommy every day and night. Why can’t I kiss her goodnight and hug her good morning every day. This is my baby.

    1. Kara Critchlow says:

      It is some of the most powerful grief one can suffer, i hate to hear so many mothers that have likely done it all all along like myself having to share the precious time with the child we carried with someone likely much less invested. How do we do it??

  22. I just happened upon this post. It’s so raw and real for me, it hurts. Before this new reality, I didn’t know this pain existed. Now I hate that I know, and despise that I live it. Reading the comments and hearing how many other mothers feel the same pain doesn’t help. I wish it didn’t have to be and never was.

    1. Kara Critchlow says:

      Couldn’t agree more. If I could go back and fix the mistakes I made that put me in his position – choosing to involve a sperm donor or not in this little life they don’t deserve or even want. That will go to my grave with me as my biggest regret in life.

  23. Kara Critchlow says:

    Thank you for sharing your pain, it made me feel less alone in what can only be described as torrential grief when forced to hand over the child you carried and raised to someone that is so ignorant to just choose to give away precious time with that child to a camp or sitter when you would do anything to have those minutes yourself. I’m sure I’ll be back to read more when my time with mine is up again.

  24. Dang it, now my shirt is all wet after blubbering.

    Thank you for sharing. My little ones father visits her at school. I haven’t worked up the courage because I don’t want to upset her. I was angry at her father for visiting during my week because I felt like it would just upset her. Your perspective has given me some understanding and a little courage too.

    Thank you again for sharing.