R & M have the greatest grandparents! My parents are the greatest grandparents. Why yes, I might be a little biased, but aren’t we all really? Why do I say that my parents are the greatest parents & grandparents? They love me, they love T, and they love our boys! It’s that simple! In marriages, people say love is a verb and we have to act our love for our spouse, which is true, but it’s also true in all relationships! And my parents are some of the best at showing us just how much they love R & M.
My parents divorced when I was 16. As I started through my adult life, I wondered how this would all unfold. I’ve always had to think about splitting my time between my parents and their spouses. What days do I go where for Christmas, have I seen one more than the other recently, am I showing favoritism in anyway to either of them. Now, as I’m married and have kids to think about, the questions have continued and yet, we’ve all seemed to come to a very natural place in all of this. Perhaps it’s my understanding of those internal questions that can help me understand my boys a little bit better.
My parents have formed some of the most awesome relationships with our boys. It was important to me that they (my parents) were allowed to have a role in the boys’ lives. I didn’t know how it was going to go and I wasn’t going to force anything, but knowing that I probably wouldn’t have my own biological children, this was important to me. T has been great from the very beginning and supported my desires where this was concerned. We started small and things have blossomed from there.
One of the things that I love about my parents (when I say parents I’m referring to my Dad & step-mom, A, as well as my Mom & step-dad, L) is the special and unique relationships that they have formed with R & M. Each house has it’s special things. At my dad’s house (who the boys have affectionately named Grizzly Bear cause yeah, he kind of looks like one and can act like one…in a good way…he looks kind of gruff, but is pretty dang soft on the inside) the boys love to help do chores, split wood, gather eggs, feed the horses, bale hay (yes, M really likes helping). A (my step-mom) always has cookies and treats for them during their “breaks” on the farm. We always go pick pumpkins at their house. M loves to spend the night with them and do wood projects with Grizzly Bear, of course there is always the games that they play with him. We also camp at least a couple times a year with Grizzly Bear & A. At my mom’s house (which they have very lovingly named Granny or Grandma Jo)…well, she has L. M & L are connected at the hip! L is really just a big kid at heart, so they get along great! Time at Granny’s house is full of pancakes, grilled cheese & tomato soup, baths, Xbox with L, micro mini wars with L, Monopoly, and usually a couple times a year go-karting. Yes, L has searched out every go-kart track in the state for the two of them and Granny is happy to tag behind, be the chauffeur, & photographer. Granny’s house is also close to the sledding hill in town, so when the boys and their friends are cold from sledding they go to her house for hot cocoa and fresh chocolate chip cookies.
All 4 of them are great cheerleaders for my boys. They attend as many games as possible and depending on the season it’s close to every game. They love to hear about school, the girlfriend, tease them, spend time with them, and more. I’m so grateful that my parents are all close so they can be so actively involved in their lives. I hope that the boys’ biological grandparents never think that I’m taking anything away from them because that is not my intention. Our boys are lucky enough to have 5 sets of grandparents and I think that’s awesome! I firmly believe that kids cannot have enough adults in their lives who love them. And that my parents do! They have accepted my life choices (to marry a divorced guy with 2 kids and to not have any of my own) and embraced it and all three of my guys and they will never know what that means to me! I couldn’t ask for better parents and grandparents for our boys!
I’ve learned that when you blend families, become a step-mom, and take on someone else’s kids you truly learn the definition of family. It’s not blood, it’s not giving birth to kids that make you a mom, a parent, or a grandparent. It’s whatever you choose to make a family that is a family. I guess that is all part of Learning As I Go.