My sons in the picture are 3.5 and nearly 5 years older than my daughter. Though the did not grow inside my body, they stole the show in many respects. First of all, LOOK at them. They are so handsome. They were the first boys that I got to care/parent for; they are 11 and 12 years older than my baby son. They didn't need me to do the nasty stuff like change diapers and potty train. That was definitely a plus!
But the things that were less obvious were that, at least in my case, they were MY firsts. They were my first teacher conferences. They were my first soccer games. They were my first trip to Boy Scouts.
My first sessions with the child counselors. I helped them with homework before my daughter ever started kindergarten. They are my first birds and the bees discussion. They are my first future college goers. They are my first weddings as "family of the groom."
But as I looked more closely, I realized that the more I got to know them, the more I understood about their father. I had the living breathing context for who my now husband is. There is virtually nothing about him that isn't explained through his kids or through his childhood. I don't take their "pieces" of their dad for granted. It was the best package deal that I could ever ask for.
Our family is special not because we were first loves that stuck it out. We are special because, despite our separate histories- we have many many firsts under our belts. We have a "family resume" that is impressive. I keep all of the brochures of the things we've done together as our evidence of what keeps us together. It's not that we're perfect but that we WANT each other day in and day out. We do not default, instead we choose to do family in a way that is unique to us.
Sure, we've hit rough spots like the rest of you. But we've also towed the line in learning about each other and making each other first. I challenge you to make someone first and not feel like family. Have you done family retreats, marriage seminars, parenting classes, communication classes, volunteered together allayed each others' fears and made each others dreams come true?
We have. I love our family and I wouldn't change it for a moment. I wish this for all of you. Thank you for reading and following my blog~ May God Bless you with genuine self love and contentment for your life. Where you are discontent, may He supply you with the energy and motivation to change those areas- with his help.