Making it up as we go along


Unexpected Easter baskets reminded me that we are all new to this stage of life

I got married the first time at the incredibly wise age of 19.  We were married for just over 14 years and gave it our best effort.  In that time frame, we had four amazing children, who are blessed with four of the best grandparents that a kid could ask for.

All four of their biological grandparents are currently living.  They are all close enough in proximity to be involved in the kids’ lives.  They are all young enough to attend events and connect with their grandchildren.

They are blessed, and we are grateful.

But what happens next?

What happens when Happily Ever After ends?

What happens next?

In the several years since the finalization of the divorce from my kids’ father, I have grown and changed.  I have been able to move on.

In just over one month, I will be marrying the man I am excited to spend the rest of my life with.  A little bit older, hopefully, a lot wiser.

Along with the vows between this amazing man and I comes a promise to the kids that I bring along with me.  They did not ask for the changes in their worlds, but they have taken them like champs.

I have never been in this position before.  I have never done this before.

My fiance has never been a stepdad before.

And this weekend it hit me with surprising clarity that his amazing mom has never been a grandma before.

Let me tell you one thing about the woman who has been introduced to 4 kids, who range in age from upper elementary to upper high school.  She was not around to see them begin to walk.  She was not present at their first days of school.  She has not sat through the majority of the elementary school concerts.

But his mom has impressed me.  My fiance and I visited with his parents over the Easter weekend while my kids were with their dad.

She sent us home with an Easter basket for each of the kids.

I was so surprised and slightly humbled.  It was so unexpected.

On the way home, I made the comment that I think this grandma-type roll is fun for his mom.

This is new for her as well.

Our entire family structure is uncharted territory for all of us.

The kids have asked what they are to call their stepdad’s parents.  We have told them that they can call them whatever they would like.

I have allowed each of the kids to develop their own relationships with the man who will be their stepdad.  I wish to do the same with their future “step-grandparents.”  I don’t even like how that sounds.

Maybe we can come up with another name for these amazing people who met me and my wild and crazy kids and chose to love us.

As a family, we will navigate this together.  I know that it will all come together, as long as we don’t force it.




  1. Krissy has always referred to Troy as “Bonus Dad” because, exactly as you said, “step” sounds blah and doesn’t give way to the love between them. I’m so excited for you. All of you.


  2. You are one amazing girl miss Mary! I have to say, I liked what you wrote about my brother and beloved sister and welcome to our growing family! Would like to spend some time with you two and our new family you are bringing. We will not be able to come to the wedding and party as we will have to go to nationals in Nevada that week :(! But want to bring a gift to you for the wedding. Can you or Todd call me and we can pick some time before or after the wedding to take you out to celebrate. 319-330-1405. Love you all Debbie

    Liked by 1 person

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