MY FIRST ROLE OF MOM WAS STEP MOM
Before I took on the role of mother, I was thrown into the role of Step Mom. It's definitely not what I dreamed of when I got married; going on a honeymoon with my step sons in tow. They were there for every romantic dinner and what was supposed to be "relaxing" beach time in Hawaii was filled with football throwing and who could swim the fastest in the ocean.
It's taken five years, but I can honestly and proudly say I couldn't be happier to be a step mom and to be on GREAT terms with my husbands ex wife. Don't get me wrong, there were endless tears, moments of anger, frustration, and stress in between those five years. But I feel without that frustration we wouldn't be in as good of a place as we are now.
Before I had this blog, or even had any children, I was asked by the boys' mom to not post any photos of her children on ANY social media. As frustrating as that was, I forced myself to respect it. I personally would be livid if someone didn't listen to my wishes while caring for my children, so how can I argue with her? But it has proven to get harder and harder now that my three children are practically attached at the hip with their brothers. They are either calling or FaceTiming one another on a daily basis, and days that they don't talk, my girls are whining about how much they miss their brothers. It gives me total guilt for not choosing to live closer.
My husband and I try as hard as we can to make sure our three kids get to see their half brothers at least every couple months. With them living in Hawaii and us here in Arizona, everything is difficult! The distance, the money, the time, and energy to travel and pick them up to bring them to us, or to fly our entire family and all the babies to go and see them. We are doing our best; my husband, me and the boys' mom. We are not perfect, but we try damn hard to make it work and to show all five of our kids that family is all that matters. Not ego, or any other pettiness that can come between a split family.
But back to the social media thing... Not having the boys on my instagram, facebook, or here on my blog breaks my heart to this day, because I wish you could see the love that the five of them have with one another. I want to give myself a huge pat on the back every time I see a picture of them together, because in all fairness a huge part of their love for one another is because of the effort my husband and I have put into making them close.
At the same time, excluding my boys from social media makes me question if I will ever regret being as transparent as I have been with my kids. I like to think everything is "Rated G" and considered family friendly on my social media accounts, but I can't say "I know for sure" where this will end up going in the future. Will it be misconstrued, effect my children negatively in the future? Only time can tell... and until then I'm going to continue to be honest, hopefully helpful, and encouraging to everyone who is looking for a creative outlet, which is what this blog has done for me.
I'm going to finish my rant by leaving a little something for all my fellow step moms... what you do is NOT EASY. But know that YOU are doing a great job. I guarantee you don't hear that enough. My girlfriend told me that the other day and it seriously meant the world coming from a woman who is a mom but was first a step mom just like me. My advice to any step mommy's who are struggling with their family relationships is to stay strong, be patient and always kill people with kindness. Relationships with children and ex's don't happen overnight. It takes consistency and patience to develop the love that you want within your family. Give yourself some grace and that time to grow. I promise it will be worth the wait.