A stepparent’s worst nightmare when they love their stepchildren is being removed and cut out of their stepchildren’s lives. No matter how much you love them, what great things you bring to the table, how much their best interest means to you, the biological parents have control over the relationships you have with their children. Whether it’s a pointless disagreement, clashing of personalities, and/or you not agreeing with parenting choices you have absolutely no say so unless the biological parents are open to your suggestions, care about your feelings and concerns, and value the relationship you have with their children, your input can sometimes be meaningless even if you mean well and have the children’s best interest at heart. I was warned about the chaos that came with being a stepmom, but the love I have for my stepdaughter was worth whatever came with the territory and I tried my best to give all I could. I choose to love her even though she is no blood relation and if you met her, you would see why it was so easy to.
With things taking a sad turn, I hope she learns one day that I never walked out on her. I tried to remain in her little life up until I wasn’t allowed to with phone calls, cards, letters, and care packages, all I could whether she received them or not. I hope every time she sees a sunrise or a sunset to remember that I am missing her and when she sees a starry sky we are both under it together no matter where we live. I hope she remembers all the trips to the river where we would sunbathe and listen to Katy Perry, the trips to the lake where we would float the day away, and our family beach vacations where we built sandcastles, searched for seashells, and fed the seagulls. I hope she remembers when she lost her fear of diving into a swimming pool without holding on to anything or anyone and how she learned how to dive off a diving board. I hope she remembers carving pumpkins and getting into costume on Halloween, dancing around the house while making chocolate chip pancakes, and all the cooking lessons I gave her. I hope she remembers how I showed her how to do her hair, give herself a manicure, her first pedicure and facial, and how every girl is beautiful. I hope she remembers the talks we had about being careful around strangers, standing up for herself, closing her eyes and taking deep breaths when she is having a bad day, and to make good choices as soon as she starts her day. I hope she remembers the love she felt around my family and I; how we never treated her any different than those that are blood related and no matter what happens, the love you have for family doesn’t end. I hope she remembers our girl’s movie nights with silly pillow fights and chick flicks while wearing a spa mask. I hope she never forgets her first big birthday party was in Texas and so many people came to see her with gifts and made her special day fun. I hope she remembers how I showed her to always take pictures of things she does so she can go back and reminisce when she’s older. I hope she remembers all that she learned about her Hispanic culture, places she visited in Texas, and all the friends and family that love her here.
All that I mentioned is just some of the highlights of the things we did together; thankfully, I have tons of pictures if she ever wanted answers to unanswered questions. Only a stepparent that has gone through this will understand how sad and devastating such a loss is. It hurts like hell because we don’t have a choice and you can’t just cut off your feelings for someone you love. All we can do is hope our stepchildren grow up remembering all the great things they learned from us and know we did the best we could when we were allowed in their lives. As much as we love them, we also have to think about our hearts, feelings, and sanity, especially when you can’t even have a civil conversation and/or mutual understanding with the bio parents. It’s sad that we often are taken for granted and not appreciated, but all we can do is keep moving forward and hope that our stepchildren will take to heart the love we gave to them. For those going through this now, my hats off to you for loving someone else’s child unconditionally, freely giving your love, time, and energy to building childhood memories they will never forget.
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