This year will mark my fourth year as a mother. My fifth year as a stepmom but my fourth year as a Mother.
For the last few years my daughter and I have had a special Mother's Day tradition that I have every intention of carrying out for the rest of my life.
I hire a professional photographer and we have a photoshoot, just the two of us.
Even though it is me who books the photoshoot, it is a gift from my husband.
Now I am about to be very straight forward and honest here...
There are going to be people who read this post and question why I would do a photoshoot with JUST my daughter and not my stepchildren too. In fact, there will be people who are completely outraged.
But then there will be stepmoms who will read this and nod their head over and over again, thanking whoever it is that they thank in this universe, that someone understands.
After the first year, someone asked me why I did a photoshoot with JUST Reese and not my stepchildren as well.
While the questions came with some judgement, I was more than happy to answer.
That being said it is difficult to answer. I need to tread very lightly, because the answer could come out/or be interpreted very very wrong.
So before I go ahead and answer it for all of you, I want to make it very clear that I love my stepchildren VERY much.
Before I even met them I committed myself to them. I committed to never treating them like they were anything but my own, and making sure that they were always considered in every aspect of our lives. As I've said over and over, they are my people and I absolutely adore them.
But the bond that I have with them is very different than the bond I have with my daughter. Before I had my baby girl, a few mothers said to me "you won't understand until you have kids of your own". This comment used to make my blood boil. I felt like it undermined the love I have for my stepchildren.
But then I had my own child, and I realized that they were right.
Just as there are some things about being a stepmom that you'll never understand unless you're a stepmom. There are some things about being a mom that you'll never understand unless you're a mom
Does that make my bond with my stepchildren less important? Not for me.
Is it less strong? Not in my mind.
But it is different than it is with my daughter. And it took me a long time to feel comfortable saying that out-loud
I am Reese's Mom, and I am their Stepmom. And in our family, and in our specific family dynamic, the two bonds are different.
I came into their world later on in life, and well, they have a great Mom, who they have a special bond with. Just like I have a special bond with Reese. They are two different relationships.
Which is why it's totally okay that I do Mother/daughter photos with just Reese.
My stepchildren get to celebrate Mother's Day with their Mom, and in all likelihood have their own traditions with her.
It would be one thing, if my husband and I only ever had pictures taken with Reese, but that's not the case at all. We've had annual family pictures since I came into their world, and will continue to do so until they won't tolerate it any longer!
The way I see it, we have one big family, with sub-families within!
These Mother's Day photos mean the world to me. I cherish them more than I will ever be able to describe. I love looking back and seeing how much we have changed, and love having someone capture those special moments between us (because we all know that mom's rarely find themselves infront of the camera)
Here is a glimpse of our photos to date!
Mother's Day 2015
Mother's Day 2016
Mother's Day 2017
I literally can't wait for this years photos! Stay tuned. I'll be sure to post!
Photo Cred: Photography By Nataal