I love love love kids! I started my family with four…then I had a stepson. This was not something I sign on for right off the bat. When I met my husband, he did not have kids, only I did. Then after a year of infidelity, I suddenly had a stepson. With bumps and bruises along the way, my new marriage had some hurdles, but they all seemed manageable. Staying through the infidelity, the new stepson and now court battle, tested my strength as a woman, as a mother, as a wife. I made it through, what I considered, the hard part, the birth. Watching my husband have a son, born to the woman he cheated on me with was hard. No other word but hard. Now came the work. Loving my husband every time he loved, cuddled, nurtured his newborn son. This was difficult, to say the least. I had envisioned this time with him, watching him with his first born (thinking it would be with me), letting it fill my heart. Now there are so many mixed emotions. I decided to stay, this was now my challenge to get through emotionally. This was hard.
I can name all the number of times my closest friends or even family members have seen me cry…including my first husband. This number can be counted literally on one hand. It’s not because I am afraid to cry or bottle up my emotions…I am just not a cryer. One of the few times I began to cry in front of my best friend, she simply looked at me and said, “What are you doing?”….as if it was completely foreign to her and to my behavior. My emotions are worn on my sleeve and crying isn’t a necessity…until I met my husband. In the past, my mother was truly the only one who really made me cry. Hurt prevailed and tears fell. My first husband was not a cruel man, he was tender and kind. Although we fought like any married couple, it was healthy fighting, no below the belt blows. Then I met my current husband. Never have I cried more in my life. I had to make the change to waterproof mascara simply because of him. It could be for any given reason on any given day that the tears came freely. He thinks of me as a crier, which is ironic. I am weaker because of him…time to find myself again and switch back to regular mascara!
As my first husband began to date his new woman, it was serious from the start. A public engagement, on national TV on Valentine’s Day, started their life off together, followed by a private wedding on a beautiful beach. Since his new wife was now an instant mom of four, we became allies. She was married previously but had no children in her first marriage, now here she was, the step mother of four young children. We spoke, and we spoke often, about the children, about their schedules, routines, behaviors. Being her friend was nothing I ever struggled with, whereas she had her doubts. Not because of anything between us but rather for what others just kept telling her. “She’s the ex,” they told her. “You aren’t suppose to be friends with her,” they said. With no reasoning behind their words, other than what society tells you is normal, she struggled with what they would tell her. After some convincing, not caring about social “norms,” I was able to have a friend in my children’s stepmom, my first husband’s new wife.