When my husband and I married nearly seven years ago, we entered into a relationship with a complex and interesting new family. Gone were our ideals, and in their place stood a complicated tangle of emotions and reservations.
In addition to my own son and daughter, I inherited three lovely young women; two who were already grown and beginning their college endeavors and another, who at 15, was beginning her sophomore year with a mixture of excitement and trepidation. Those first few years felt like a confusing maze with blurred lines and no real direction. And though we took a few wrong turns along the way, we never lost sight of one another; holding fast as we bumped into walls and not letting go until we came out on the other side, together and back into the light.
It wasn't easy for any of us, but I'm so glad that we persevered and that we have come to that place of understanding where we can truly appreciate and love each other.
Since the road that leads to the girls winds through Oklahoma, we don't see them as often as we'd like, and with the addition of a darling little grandson, that makes it all the more difficult. Still, the moments shared are precious and we are thankful for the loveliness of those times.
I have written very little here about
my step-daughters. I think I've felt it was a bit of an invasion since they don't know that I write and share in this way, and I wouldn't want them to feel compromised or uncomfortable. But this evening, as I look back on these pictures from our Thanksgiving together, I'm so very grateful to have these young women in my life and all that they bring. And I am thankful that through the twists and turns of a "blended family", we have endured this crazy ride, now standing together at this place....and being counted as one.
Sometimes blessings come disguised; unexpected and unscripted in this journey through life. It's amazing when we open our hearts, just what - and who - is waiting to fill them.