The stepmom life is often full of difficulties.
Of not knowing your role. Of not knowing where you belong. Of not knowing what’s the right thing to do or say or be in any given moment.
But it is also full of the greatest gifts I have ever had the joy of receiving.
There’s absolutely nothing like feeling true, abiding love for a child not because you have to, but because you just do.
There’s nothing like forging a relationship, not through genetics, but through time and effort and long heart-to-hearts over worn-out coffee tables.
Over endless board games. And car rides to grandma’s. And conversations about nothing and everything and peppered with pop songs in between.
The delicate balance of the stepmom life is not lost on me.
I have had – as all stepmoms have, I think – days where my heart seems to crumble and fight and struggle through even the most simple of moments. I have cried many tears over seemingly innocent comments that refuse to release themselves from my heart, no matter how hard I try to make them.
I know that heartache deeply.
But what good does it do to let our hearts stay there?
What use is it for me to focus on that when there is an amazing little person right in front of my eyes – at the forefront of my life, really – who has done nothing but exist and has changed my world irrevocably?
It does the world – and yourself- much more good when you are grateful.
When you realize and acknowledge and constantly remind yourself to focus on the awesome aspects of your stepmotherhood journey.
I am endlessly, impossibly grateful for personal jokes. For family photoshoots. For sharing about our days around the dinner table.
I’m grateful for a husband who supports me and my role in his child’s life wholeheartedly and without reservation.
I’m grateful for the support and community I have found in other stepmoms who understand and accept my family exactly as it is – no more, no less.
And this kid, you guys.
I cannot begin to express how grateful I am for this little being made of wild hair, kind heart, and more sass than I know what to do with.
I was gifted motherhood.
I will never stop being grateful for that miracle.
In a strange, wild, less-than-ideal way, perhaps, but the fact remains that I was gifted this life. I was gifted this child to help raise in whatever way I can and want to and am able to. And I take that responsibility seriously.
I get to stand behind and beside this young person as she grows from a quiet, contemplative, secretly-super-silly little child into an amazing, kind, talented young woman. And I get to help her do that.
I will not be perfect at it. I am not perfect at it.
But I don’t have to be.
I just have to be there, taking my time and trying my best.
And constantly, daily, getting after grateful.
#bestlife, am I right?
Will you join me?