Growing up, my mom had unknowingly taught me the importance of a blended family. I have two brothers, a sister and two stepsisters. My older brother and little sister are from my mom, while my little brother and stepsisters are from my dad and his previous marriage. Anytime my brothers cousins from his dads side came around, they were automatically my cousins too. His grandmother was my grandmother and vice versa when it came to my family on my dads side. It was truly an awesome way to grow up. We never knew the difference and loved each other the same. My mom was a single parent with three kids and I thought she was the coolest. Even as a little girl I would tell her I wanted to be just like her and have a baby by myself. Of course at that age, I didn’t know what that would entail lol.
I met my daughters father when I was 15 and he was 18. We hung out with a big group of friends and remained pretty close for years. It wasn’t until I turned 19 that we officially started dating. Shortly after, we found out we were expecting our daughter. I was in my first semester of college, I had just landed a job at a very popular hotel and I was freaking out. We were so young and I definitely wasn’t ready to be a mom. Even so, I decided to embark on this crazy, amazing but also very scary journey to parenthood and I couldn’t be happier.
Being so young and having so much responsibility thrown at you can really take a toll on a relationship. Our relationship wasn’t a healthy one and ultimately, we wanted to be the best parents we could be to our daughter, even if that meant being friends. We both came from single parent homes and never wanted our daughter to feel the gap so we decided we would co-parent as a family. He had been a part of my life as well as my families for so long, we decided to keep things as they were. Holidays and birthdays would be spent together.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m sure it seems like it was a smooth transition and everything was rainbows and sunshine but it truly wasn’t lol. These past few years have been a roller-coaster of emotions but our main goal is to always have our daughter feel that she is loved and that’s why we co-parent the way we do. I dated a couple of people after her father and I broke up. I will never forget the conversation I had with a guy I was dating for a couple of months. I told him that my dream was for one day to be able to throw my daughter a birthday party where both of her parents were present and we all coexisted happily. He laughed and told me that would never happen if him and I were still together. It’s so funny how people let their egos get in the way of things.
When I met my fiancé my daughter was 3 and a half, we dated for three months before I introduced him to her. I told him about how her father and I co-parented and that she came first. I can see how for anyone, it would be an adjustment. When some people split up after having kids, they do the whole court thing and go their separate ways. That wasn’t our case. We wanted her to feel as normal as possible and to always feel like we were a family so we spent holidays and birthdays together. Not everyone agrees with that and that’s perfectly fine. When her 4th birthday rolled around, it really tested my relationship with my fiancé (who was my boyfriend at the time, obviously lol) and the relationship I had with her father. It was all new and took A LOT of adjusting. I’m sure it was hard for her father to see this brand new person come into her life and make himself a part of it. But once he saw his heart and his intentions, the rest was history!
Now here we are, three and a half years and several birthday parties later (coexisting happily, like a dream) Its been a long road but we did it! We are truly the most amazing blended family and I am so thankful and blessed. Yesterday was my daughters 7th birthday and as I sat around the table with my little family, I couldn’t help but feel an overwhelming amount of love. She is lucky enough to have TWO dads who love her dearly. Her father and my fiancé have the best relationship. We have really made it our priority to be one big family. We added a new little person to the family ( our son) and my daughters father loves him as his own (my daughter even calls him my sons stepdad lol! She doesn’t quite understand how it works). I’m so grateful to be at this point in my life with the people I love. It hasn’t been easy but it’s been totally worth it. I’m not saying that this is how co-parenting should be done with everyone, but it’s how we do it and it works for us.