I wish that I could put into words how absolutely fantastic my Christmas was. I got the ONE and only thing that I wanted: To wake up with my man and my girls on Christmas morning.
I just wish it hadn’t been at 4:30 am on Christmas morning. Just sayin’.
One of the best moments over the Christmas holiday was having one of my famous moments of clarity as I sat listening to my youngest daughter, Lil’ Mo, reading quietly to CBG. He was utterly fantastic with her, being totally patient, encouraging her, and helping with some of the trickier words that she bumped up against in the process.
I was struck by how comfortable and natural it all felt. More than it ever has before. We are a family.
I thought about some of our more challenging moments as a blended family over the past year. Moments when I wondered if we’d ever be able to find our way. Moments when I felt sure that we couldn’t. There have been many times over the last several years when family time together felt tense, uncomfortable. CBG didn’t always know how to handle my girls. I was often nervous about his reaction to them and felt like I was walking on eggshells. He worried about *my* reaction to his interactions with my girls and so HE felt like he was walking on eggshells.
I think that other couples would have used some of our tense “family interactions” as a reason to call it quits. To be honest, I felt that temptation myself a couple of times. The thing that kept me from doing that, though, was my faith in what CBG and I shared together. There was a part of me that refused to believe that he and I could love each other so much and connect on so many levels, and yet completely fail in this one single area.
Simply put, I had faith in us. I refused to give up.
I’ve learned a lot in the last few years when it comes to blended families. I’ve learned that just because you love someone doesn’t mean that you will automatically love their children. I’ve learned that bonding with someone else’s kids takes time and patience. I’ve learned that if you and your partner are both committed to making the relationship work – no matter what – then you will be able to make it through the challenges that will inevitably be thrown at you.
The thing is, all couples face challenges. Blending our families is one of ours.
But honestly, at this point I can say that I feel 100 percent better than I did a year ago. Like many things in life, finding our way as a blended family has simply taken time, patience and most of all, faith. And honestly, it almost makes it feel more special because of the work we’ve done to get here.
Filed under: CBG, clarity, family, figuring stuff out, gratitude, living and learning, the girls | Tagged: blended families, canadian bald guy, christmas, happiness, kids, life, long distance relationship, relationships, singlemom, step parenting |