The last few blog posts have been about blending a family together. I've talked about the positives of this, because there are so many positives that come from opening your heart and making the choice to be a family.
I will never know the feeling of being pregnant, giving birth and holding my own child in my arms for the first time. But I am blessed to have the kids I have via marriage.
I jumped in with both feet with two teenagers and I don't think I'd trade it for anything. I have a close relationship with both my kids.
My daughter was younger, and my husband had to travel a lot for his job, so she and I had to find our own way together. Our fondest memories are our afternoon movie when school got out. We'd have popcorn and hang out on the couch and watch a chick flick. Like any mother and daughter, we could get on each other's nerves on occasion. But we couldn't stand to stay angry at each other. Our "fights" lasted about 10 minutes, then one or the other would apologize for our outburst and then we'd break out the hugs and the popcorn to set our world back to rights.
My son was 17 when my husband and I married. While I knew he and I would get along and be 'friends' -- I guess I didn't expect a deep parent/child relationship with him. I expected him to only be home another year and a half as he finished high school, then he'd leave for college. He'd be too caught up in the fun of high school, girlfriends, proms and planning for college. Oh yes, let's not forget his rock 'n roll band in the garage (which had to score me some points as the coolest "stepmonster" around!) :)
Remember, he is technically my husband's step-son. He has his Dad and another step-mom that he'd go see most weekends. So, he was surrounded with parents already by the time I came along. But lo and behold, our 'mother/son' relationship did begin to develop.
We talked... we were interested in what was going on in each other's lives. And yes, I was cool because he could have the garage band -- and I always seemed to have enough food to feed the army of teenagers that invaded our house. He lived at home an extra year before he left for college. I was glad I had more time with him than I expected, all for the good. Fast forward to last month.
My son is married now, but thankfully lives about 5 miles from us. He and his wife took a trip to Las Vegas to celebrate their anniversary and her birthday. My husband and I got to babysit their dog. Yep, we have a grand-dog.
My husband and kids always had dogs. There were four of them when my husband and I were dating. We had three dogs until 2007. I never grew up with dogs, I wasn't used to them. My kids have spent all this time trying to get me attached to the dogs.
Well, when my son came over to pick up his dog, he found me in the backyard with her, playing with her. He couldn't resist teasing me about turning into a dog lover. I'm not sure I'd call myself a dog lover, but I do like his dog. And I guess it showed.
Anyway, on this particular day, we sat on my back porch, playing with the dog and just talked. We didn't talk about anything too deep or world-changing, and it wasn't for a long period of time. But it was still a sweet time. Especially because he couldn't resist teasing me about playing with the dog.
I don't think I ever want to take for granted mornings like that one. Where I can just sit with my son, talk about stuff, and end with promises of dinner with him and his wife sometime soon.
Our kids are precious. Anyone who is a parent knows this. My husband and I have held on to the idea that children belong to God... and we're only entrusted with them for a brief time. At some point, you have to let them go and have to let them grow up. But if you've used that time wisely, then you can have those special back porch moments, chatting with your adult son while playing fetch with his dog.
So, what are some of your special moments with your kids? Please feel free to share.