Stepmomma Stuff

I don't want to jinx myself...but life in Quebec has sort of started to feel like...home. It's still weird, I am still confused and often miss entire conversations, I still only fill up my tank every three weeks (even though it IS a Honda, I just really don't drive a lot, especially between 15h00-19h00). I still complain (I think people are just so much more mean here), I still haven't found a one-stop grocery store (we go to 3 every week and the organic produce is next to impossible).

But, I kinda feel like home. Maybe it's because even though we don't yet have a job (although the market is starting to pick up!!!), we are getting into a routine. I think the biggest part of me feeling at home is my relationship with the girls.

Although we've never really had any problems per se, I am living with a two girls - both still technically teenagers. I probably treat them too much like they are adults, I probably filter myself too much at times and not enough at others (ex: I jokingly told the youngest to make sure she drinks lots of water if she took ecstasy at a "youth rave" one night. She laughed. I'm not sure her dad thought it was as funny as she did....). But it seems we have sort of figured out a way to deal with each other without too many bumps (although there have been bumps).

I never saw myself as a step-mother. Certainly not to teenagers. And while I was an expat, it was much, much easier, because I wasn't really around all that much. I saw them maybe four times a year, I had random conversations on Facebook or when they were with their dad on vacation, but other than that, I was just a casual presence in their life.

Then I really moved in. Then they really moved in. Then the reality of adolescence + me trying to figure out my place in the family + me figuring out how to communicate with them = well...a few nights of tears and awkwardness. But here's the thing that I learned - there will be plenty more "arguments", hurt feelings, awkwardness - but life goes on. We can talk about it. We can not talk about it. Louis and I are both super aware that these are still growing years for the girls and we are both aware that they still need us (even me!), our love, guidance, and support. Yes, it's a lot different should they be small children, but the demand is in the same, just in a different form.

My heart pretty much burst last week when I had a totally open conversation with one of the girls how we are all dealing with the transitions of living with one another. The fact that she felt safe enough to openly speak with me, listen to what I had to say, express herself, open up, well, I felt like it was the biggest honor ever. I didn't so much tell her that, but I did take that opportunity to tell her that I think I am ridiculously lucky to have them in my life and that that needed to be said. We don't have an "I love you" relationship like they do with their father...and well, I'm sure they love me in some kind of teenager-step-mother kind of way, but I love them, and I think they need to know that. I don't think that a teenager can suffer from knowing just how much they are loved.

I'm not sure what the point of this post was... I guess to give a little update. I'm still struggling, I still randomly say, I hate FRENCH, but at least I'm starting to fit in a little bit. Damn, this better not jinx it. ;)

1 comment: