So here I am, with a whole family and I must say it’s not the way I thought it would be.
I’ve been married for five years. We both have children from prior relationships. His son is his biological child and mine is adopted. His son is an adult living in a different country and mine is a surly teenager living right here in the same city. We also have two biological children together.
As if starting a life together isn’t challenging enough, BLENDING is HARD. My son and husband don’t get along well. My husband’s son doesn’t speak English so outside of a few sentences on Google translate we haven’t spoken.
So when I say I’ve got a nuclear family, I mean the kind that is likely to blow up.B
But then there is LOVE. I do love my family and all its messiness. I use to think that I was clear on what I’d tolerate or what was unacceptable. Love has a way of changing your perspective.
Outside of the challenge of blending, we are cross-cultural. Lort, I thought that because we were both black that we would be fine. How stupid of me. We are both old fashioned and follow gender roles. He is the head of our household and I happily follow. He is great at managing our home, just lacking in the romance department. He is also a great father. I love watching the love they have for each other. But as much as I love this, I equally hate the tension and distance between my husband and my son. It wasn’t always like that.
Early into our relationship, he was eager to meet my son. I waited six months before introducing them. They got along pretty great. My son was seven and open. My husband really wanted to show me how he could be a family man. It was all really sweet. Well, it was.
Little kids grow up. Puberty+shared custody+blending is a recipe for friction. I’m saddened by the lack of harmony. My son is problematic on his own. My husband for sure has some issues that are clearly showing. Nonetheless, this is my family, for better or worse.
Then there are the lights of my life. The least challenging family members. My toddlers. Yep, I’ve got two of them. They are surely from God. I mean they are toddlers so they are A-holes, but they are mine.
While there is love, there also must be work. The goals I have for my family are:
- Learn french – I mean the language barriers are getting on my last nerve. I want to be able to freely communicate with my husband and his extended family. Especially his son.
- A family vision board – As a family, we talk a lot about what we want to accomplish but we need to put pen to paper. Once the vision is laid out clearly, we can develop smart goals.
- More babies? – So one and a possible. I love being a mom and I have always wanted a big family. Why not a few more? Well, one more if it’s a girl and an additional try if its a boy.
- Therapy or Conference – I’d love to get us in therapy for marriage or a marriage counselor. My husband and I are from very different cultures so he is unlikely to go to couples therapy in the near future, but I am sure the conference is something he would be up for.
I’m excited to see how my family grows over time. I’m committed to making it last forever. I pray that God continues to strengthen me even when my commitment is weak.