This summer has been very busy for all of us so I have not posted as often. We have had trips, sports, work, and different parenting schedules. It’s great because we really do get more extended time together with the kids as a family but it is also more chaotic because we have to figure out who is going where with which parent on this vacation or this trip or that conference. In June, we had the most amazing vacation with my husband’s family but it was over way too quickly. We have had a summer filled with swimming, playing, working on multiplication tables, running, volunteering, piano playing, and praying. We have also had some unexpected conflict changes. One of the other parents has strayed away from the court order and allowed the child to go back and forth this summer whenever they want (which has been wonderful and less stressful) and we have had another parent to take very precious time away from us causing more stress. I am actually looking a little bit forward to school starting just to get back in a normal & hopefully stable routine which is good for all of us. Blended family life is not easy. It is constantly evolving. It is hard work. It is dedicated consistency. It is at times disappointing. It is at times overwhelming. However, to me as a biomom and bonus mom it is the most life-changing love I could have ever known. First, it is a life-changing love for my husband. He has shown the deepest compassion and care for me like I have never had before. He has loved my children with a quiet strength and patience that even they have noticed and responded to with equal love and respect toward him. Watching him work hard to be a very involved loving father to his son. Teaching him to grow into the man God created him to be and life changing for me as I support him in every way I can as he does that. Second, it has been a life-changing love for my bonus son. Loving him like my own and being patient to let him “catch up” and not pushing him to be part of a family that he was not born in to but to grow in to. Loving him as he finds his place in this family as well as know that he is just as equally important as me, his dad, or the other two kids. Third, I have this life-changing love for my children. I have overcome the guilt of the previous destruction of my relationships to be able to forgive their fathers and forgive myself so that I let go of the “control monster” and encourage a deep loving relationship between my children and their dads. I am of the mind that the more I encourage time and a closeness with their dad the more they develop a life-changing love for me because they don’t have to choose. They are free to love us equally.
I have saved the best for last. Most of all I have developed a deeper life-changing love for my Heavenly Father! He has cultivated all this life-changing love in me after putting this little family together. Through all of the craziness of this past year I have grown closer to Him each and every day. Having to depend on Him both emotionally and spiritually, but also physically as well. I haven’t really shared a lot but a year ago my life was turned upside down when it was invaded with episodes of vertigo. This spinning vertigo was short lived however it was replaced with severe motion sensitivity and MAV which basically translates to 24/7 rocking swaying dizziness that waxed and waned up numerous times a day until a few months ago. I had to take a medical leave from my fantastic job because I had to stop driving and take balance/motion therapy to re-train my brain to compensate. The neuro therapist explained that after the few initial attacks of spinning vertigo, my system did not re-set as most would do because of my long history of migraines. Instead it made me super sensitive to motion pretty much making me feel like I am on a boat all the time. With therapy I have slowly regained my balance and now the rocking is very minimal and only noticed occasionally during the day. I also have migraine medication as well as dizzy medication to take in case of an emergency as needed. All of this really put me in an unknown place because I have had to completely depend on others. I have always been so independent and free spirited and that was all taken away for a long while. I have prayed and cried out to God and through all of this I have come to know Him better. I have come to a better understanding that beyond religion God wants me to know Him and that to know him is to love selflessly and to love selflessly is to be compassionate! Jeremiah 22:16 NLT “He gave justice and help to the poor and needy, and everything went well for him. Isn’t that what it means to know me? says the Lord.” I have been studying and loving the book of Hosea right now. Hosea 6:6 NLT ” I want you to show love not offer sacrifices. I want you to know me more than I want burnt offerings.” God wants my heart, not my religion! The more I have come to really know God the more I have experienced life-changing love for Him! The more I have experienced this life-changing love the more compassion He has given me for others far beyond what I have ever known. Showing compassion to others is completely selfless because it is me doing for others with nothing expected in return other than experiencing joy in being compassionate and it has also helped me get the focus off of me. This is why I am sharing all of this in this post. Life is difficult, it is messy and especially so in blended family life and especially if you are also dealing with physical sickness like I have. It is easy to get trapped in yourself, and in your circumstances. If you are struggling with these things too I encourage you to start asking yourself how you can be compassionate and how you can demonstrate it to others.