Sunday, September 23, 2012
Molly achieved a big milestone today. She rode her bike, by herself, without training wheels. It didn't take her long to figure out how to balance and for me to let go. I thought I was ready, as I was exhausted from running beside her for about 30 minutes, but then, as I watched her going further and further away from me I realized this was a huge moment. This was Molly's first true taste of Independence. If she were to fall she would be too far away for me to get there immediately. She was on her own. What a moment. I am so very grateful I was there to help her achieve it. I helped her learn how to balance and I learned, just a little bit, how to let go.
Friday, September 14, 2012
Today my sweet Abigail Iris is 10 years old. A decade. Wow, where did it go? I remember every moment of the day she came into this world as if it just happened. It was quite an ordeal but it all turned out amazingly. I still remember my first ultrasound. My Mom went with me because Ed had to work. I told the ultrasound tech I was wearing a pink sweater for a reason. When she confirmed I was, indeed, carrying a girl, I looked at my Mom and the tears just flowed. I had always wanted a little girl. I have always had a great relationship with my Mom and I could not imagine not sharing that with my own daughter. We finished up and I drove across town to where Ed was working. I barely had the car in park when I jumped out and met him to tell him the news. He and I hugged and we both cried, a healthy baby girl! Ed and I knew immediately this was our "Abigail". A few years before we were married Ed and I had gone out to get a bite to eat at "Lizard's Thicket" in Irmo, SC. As we were waiting for our table we noticed the prettiest little blond hair, blue eyed little girl playing with her grandparents, she had a backpack with her that said, "Abigail". Ed and I loved the name, we went home and looked up the meaning and it said, "Father's Joy", we agreed, if we had a daughter, she would be our "Abigail". We decided shortly thereafter her middle name would be "Iris", after my Mom.
Abby and I have, thankfully, always been close. I have also enjoyed watching her develop a pretty special relationship with her stepdad. He is always there to give her the big bear hugs a little girl sometimes needs, as well as the advice and guidance that all kids need. She is my brave, strong, funny, courageous, smart "Doodlebug". She has learned more in her short life than some people learn in a lifetime. Abby's bout with alopecia taught her so very much about self esteem, self confidence, tolerance and life itself. Abby is a "go-getter". She loves life. She likes to giggle, goof off, play jokes, and have fun with her friends. She loves to paint her finger and toe nails, but never less than two colors, usually at least three! Peace signs, bright colors, Monster High, the book series "Katie Kazoo", musicals (especially "Mamma Mia") and lately she even claims to like that whole "Twilight" stuff! She is, undeniably growing up, even beginning to shave her legs...there are so many minutes I look back on fondly. I remember the first night she slept in a bed, not a crib, our trip to Arkansas, our trip to Pennsylvania, our trip to the mountains of Georgia, so many day trips around South Carolina, Halloweens, Christmases, Easters, Birthdays, and of course just our times at home. She is an amazing kid and I truly treasure every moment with her and enjoy watching her discover the world and herself. She makes me very proud to be her Mom.
Friday, September 7, 2012
He stole my heart..
So, I stole his last name.
By now, unless you live under a rock, I'm positive anyone that reads my blog knows Julio and I finally made it official. We were married last Saturday, September 1. What a long, strange journey it has been. I knew from the first moments we spent together that this was something special. It only took a few months and we decided to relocate him from his home in Georgia to SC. But let me back up to HOW we met in the first place.
Twitter. Yes, twitter. Remember "follow Fridays"? (Do they still do those??) Apparently Julio saw where someone, we still cannot figure out who, recommended he follow me. He did, he found my blog and was intrigued. I can still remember when I received the email that "Darkwulfe is now following you". I clicked on the picture and thought, "Whatever, don't know him and he clearly doesn't know how to spell "wolf." Then he started tweeting me and we began to converse. I read his blog. I didn't agree with a single thing he posted. BUT, I was very attracted to this man that was raising his daughter on his own, having "date" nights with her, this man that apparently liked to read (an actual book!), this man that had opinions, had been through several traumatic life events and shared them, this man that liked to write. I was intrigued.
We started talking more and more. And laughing even more than that. Do you know how much fun that is? To laugh. Actually giggle. On a daily basis. With the one you love. It is amazing. And fun. We started planning weekend visits (he lived 6 hours away). Counting the days and minutes until we could see each other again. We began letting our kids get to know one another. We knew we had something very special.
Family. Not by blood, but by love.
I can tell you blending families is not easy. Not by a long shot. Julio has three children and I have three children. When he moved here he only had custody of one. By the following Summer his oldest, Becky and Ben, had decided they wanted to live with us permanently. In our three bedroom house. So we buckled down and began making plans. Two sets of bunk beds in the girls' room and one set in the boys. We merged. We struggled to try and be fair to all kids in daily arguments but we quickly learned a new favorite slogan: "the fair is where you buy cotton candy". We learn new strategies and new ways of dealing with the daily dramas of teenagers, preteens, younger daily. It is a crazy life, but I wouldn't have it any other way.
Thursday, June 14, 2012
I knew Father's Day was going to be a little bit tough for Julio since this is the first year in a very long time that he hasn't been with his kids on his special day. Since Becky and Ben decided to live with us during the school year, they now visit their Mother when they are out of school and Bethanie is staying with Julio's parents for the Summer. I wanted to make sure he still had a special day so I started planning early. While the kids were on Spring Break and I was on vacation I took them to one of the local parks and photographed each one holding a sign stating why he is so very special to them (I also did this for each of their Grandfather's). It was quite a labor intensive affair as there are six kids plus a group shot times 3 men in their lives times multiple shots to make sure I got the "perfect shot". Plus it was HOT. But, tempers flaring and temperatures rising did not deter me. I still got it all done.