Was 15 years meaningless? Surprisingly, no.

>> Sunday, May 29, 2011

After being made to feel meaningless and expendable by my stepdaughter after 15+ years of loving her, to be kicked to the curb when it came to graduation (seriously, eight tickets are more than enough - or should be and when you tell your dad he gets two for dad and stepmom and then take stepmom's ticket away a week before the trip - wrong!), I thought to myself - the last 15+ years was a waste...I put myself, my heart, out there and it didn't mean anything...I took care of her like my own and it meant nothing.  Why did I bother?

The other day I told a friend of mine how it all felt meaningless after all these years of being in a parental role with my stepdaughter and this being the result and she said something that made a huge difference to me:

"You should not feel like your help in raising her is meaningless though, loving her was the right thing to do. You can be proud of yourself! It is sad that an exciting/happy time is this way because it doesn't have to be like that, which you already see, because you aren't CRAZY."

She's right.  I wouldn't have done anything different.  I COULDN'T have done anything different.  It isn't in me to treat children any different than with love and caring.  I could not have been a stepmom the last 15 years to two kids without showing them any positive emotion or taking care of them when they were in my home.  I did the right thing by them and it's on their mother and them how they behave now as an adult and almost adult.  It's on them how they treat other members of their family - their dad, me, and their four younger siblings.  

Now, this is not to say that as an adult, she's going to get my heart out front for her to puncture time and again.  What my stepdaughter did to me, and her dad especially, was terribly wrong and as of right now, it's changed the dynamics, the bond, between she and I in my eyes.  Stab me in the back once - shame on you. Stab me in the back twice - shame on me.  She's an adult now and responsible for her actions.  She's not a young child anymore who needs me to brush her hair, make her meals, and kiss her boo boos away.  I CAN be proud for providing for them when they were at dad's house and giving everything I could that they needed to be loved and taken care of since marrying my husband while they were with us despite the conflict, interference and vindictiveness of their mother over the years.  


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