This weekend I have the privilege of speaking about the evolution of my blog at the Women’s Lifestyle Show in London, Ontario.
To this day, it blows my mind that my early stepmom struggles have landed me my dream job (Which is this by the way!)
Before the actual event, I went back and forth with the coordinators about interesting stories I have as a result of this stepmom journey. Somehow we started talking about the first time I realized that I may, just may, be in over my head.
I'm talking about the moment when I realized that this whole stepmom gig was going to be no walk in the park! Or in this case, the moment I realized that dating a single dad with three kids was going to have some complications.
Now, I will say that there were several of these situations, especially at the beginning. I can think of many times when I said to myself “OMG this is nuts”, or “What the hell am I thinking?” or “oh sh*t this is awkward"
But the very first time I went “uhh ohh” is particularly memorable. It's engrained in my memory, clear as a bell.
It was a couple months into my relationship with the man who is now my husband. We hadn’t done the whole “meet the kids” thing, and I certainly hadn’t been introduced to his ex-wife. Things were and weren’t serious at the same time.
I was right smack in the middle of the lust phase. You know that feeling at the beginning of your relationship where you have butterflies all the time and are so excited about EVERYTHING. Cloud 9 is a good way to describe it.
Well there I was, hanging out on Cloud 9, leaving for work one morning. My now husband had already left. I was rushing out the door trying to make it on time. (The kids were at their moms).
Still living in my fairy-tale world, I jumped in my car with a smile from ear to ear. I cranked up the music, and rolled down my window all ready for my commute. Again, I’ll tell you I was on Cloud 9.
Now to really understand this story, and to picture what actually happened, I need to describe the laneway I was driving out. (The laneway that I now call my own.) It’s a long one. Almost half a block long. Our house is behind the driveway and cannot be seen from the road.
Okay so now that you have the visual, picture me, windows down, music cranked, smile from ear to ear heading down that driveway and then SLAMMING on the breaks when I realized my husband’s ex-wife and the kids were sitting at the end of the driveway. (Remember the kids and ex-wife I had yet to meet?)
SHOOOT… I had forgotten that the kids catch the school bus at the house every morning! And yup, there they were!
I’m sure you’re wondering what I did now. How did I handle this awkward situation? The driveway was blocked. I couldn’t get out.
Well… I reversed down that long driveway, and pretty much hid my car behind a fence.
Yes, heart beating out of my chest, feeling super awkward, and a little embarrassed that I reversed down a driveway and hid… I sat there until I was sure that the bus had picked up the kids and that everyone was gone.
While I waited my phone beeped. It was my “boyfriend”.
He had received a text message… “you can tell your girlfriend I see her”
I didn’t respond.
“Where are you?” he asked…
How could I tell him I was hiding behind a fence?
No longer on Cloud 9.
Why the HECK did I reverse down the driveway and hide like a child?
I still don’t really have an answer to that question. All I know is that this was first time I realized that this whole dating a single dad with three kids thing was going to be more complicated than I thought. And that I may not always react in the best way possible.
Many times I reference being a stepmom and say “the really important things in life don’t come with a handbook”… well this is a prime example of that!
I can laugh now, but that day it certainly wasn’t funny. Like Is said, it was the moment when I realized I may just be in over my head!
Anyways, I hope the visual of me cranking my car into reverse and booking it down the driveway put a little smile on your face this Monday morning.
Now I’d love to hear the story of when you realized that this whole stepmom gig was more than you thought you were signing up for!
Come on! Spill the goods... I told you…