I admit that growing up I was constantly confused by the boundaries between a mom, a step mom, and a daughter. I never liked the questions from kids at my school about why I call my “mom” by her first name (and this continued into high school). I always felt that I was explaining myself too much, but calling you my step-mom was such an odd, distanced label. I don’t have the stereotypic relation as a step-daughter with you. We were never at war with each other, I was not singled out as different from your biological kids, I never thought you were a replacement for my mom. I feel like a part of your family now. Maybe I am just one of the lucky ones. For so many children, divorce tears their life apart, but for me, it resulted in a patchwork of parents stitched together with me as the common thread.
I no longer hate the questions. I like saying “all of my parents” when I talk about my mom and dad, step-dad and step-mom. It shows the love I have for all of you and the impact all of my parents have made on me. It is an acknowledgement you all deserve. This took a long time and there was so much confusion; but, now I enjoy the complex nature of my life and relationship with my parents. Most importantly, I love having two moms. I admire you both endlessly. I remember asking my dad how he could have ever been married to both of you. I always struggled to picture this because you truly are so different from one another. And he responded by saying “they are both strong and beautiful women” and no one can disagree with that. The differences between you two only helped me to grow. I was watered by you both through your advice, your love, your support. Throughout my childhood I grew with exposure to multiple perspectives, through the lens of two powerful and intelligent women.
Thank you both for serving as an inspiration to me, just by simply living your ordinary life.
And thank you to all of those who play a maternal role in everyone’s life. You don’t have to be the traditional mother figure to truly change some one’s world from ordinary to extraordinary. Happy Mother’s Day.