Confessions of a Dreamer
It is often hard for me to wrap my head around that my daughter and step-daughter are 17 years old and getting ready to graduate high school. It seems like yesterday that they just met. Two head strong, stubborn little nine year old girls who did not like each other at all. Polar opposites on extreme ends of the spectrum, our first year together was filled with so many challenges. Add in my son who at age 3 had been declared Autistic and was still in diapers and my step-son who was only 7 and you had a house filled every other weekend with noise, excitement, fights and laughter.
My husband and I had a whirlwind romance. We met at a conference on the beach and what was supposed to be a weekend of “fun” took us both by surprise when we realized we wanted much more. By our third date, he proposed, 5 months after we met I packed up my bags, put my 2 kids on an airplane and moved from Florida to Illinois to start a new life. I do not think either of anticipated how much work would be involved in blending 2 families, where each child had a different mother or father. It was an exercise in compromise, a lesson in humility and an experience that is still ongoing almost 9 years after it started.
Now we are getting ready to move into a new chapter in our lives. Our 2 girls are graduating high school. Getting ready to forge ahead down their own paths. It is both with honor and fear that I watch this transition. Honor that I have been given the opportunity to play a role in the lives of not one but two amazing young women. Fear in that I wonder did I teach them enough? Do they have the tools they need? Will they leave and suddenly our closeness start to fade away?
This Thanksgiving I am doing something we have not done before and actually waiting to cook until Saturday so that my entire family can eat together and celebrate the wonderful things we have to be thankful for. I for one am so thankful that despite those who called us crazy, and said it would never work. Thankful for all the fights, all the love, all the everything in between. So this Thanksgiving we will say goodbye to the chapter that is closing while turning the page on the new. I for one am very excited to see what this new chapter has in store for each of us.