My husband Darren calls me a bulldog.
(He also calls me the most unorganized, organized person he knows – but we can talk about that one later.)
He says when something needs to be taken care of, I do it.
I get shit done.
Especially when it comes to motherhood.
We have fairly defined roles in our home.
There is some overlap…
But for the most part, my role is house + kids.
His role is finances, garage + taking the garbage out.
Sure, that makes some people cringe, but it works for us. He works long hours, I have more flexibility.
When my daughter needs something. I make sure she has it
When she’s feeling something, I make sure she’s supported.
When she needs tutoring, vision therapy or extra support, it’s arranged.
When the granola bar bin is empty, I go to the store.
My responsibility is to make sure that she has what she needs to succeed in whatever way she wants to succeed.
I know what’s going on.
I am the pulse of our home.
A week or so ago, I was reminded of the hardest things about being a stepmom.
In fact, I literally said, “THIS is why being a stepmom can feel so shitty”.
I can’t be this for my stepson (15).
Not the in the way I am for her.
Especially when I don’t know what’s going on.
It’s harder to be proactive, without overstepping.
It’s tricky when your values don’t feel aligned with other the parents.
It can be hard to sit back and watch.
Even harder to have the same argument over and over again.
“This doesn’t need to be this hard!”
“How did it even get to this point?”
are two things I said on repeat last week.
With our daughter, I just freakin’ do it.
I don’t need to ask for permission. I don’t need to get other opinions. I don’t need to deal with different values and expectations.
I make it happen.
I can’t always do that with my stepkids.
This is where the mixed messages that stepmoms get comes into play.
You’re supposed to love your stepkids like they’re your own. You’re supposed to treat your stepkids like they’re your own…
but then when you go to do that, you’re reminded they’re not your own at all.
If this resonates, know that it’s normal to feel powerless.
It’s easy to fixate on all the things that are out of your control.
Instead, I encourage you to focus on things you CAN control.
What CAN you do? How CAN you show up? What systems CAN you put in place to prevent this from happening again?
Remember, don’t focus so much on things you can’t control that you lose sight of all that you can.
PS. If you were on Instagram this week you may have noticed a new account for my membership. The Exclusive Stepmom Community is now The KICK-ASS Stepmom Membership!
I’m slowly making changes and have some new exciting things in the works.
If you’re a member, this a great place to stay in the loop. If you’re not, there will be lots of free support happening on this account. Come on over!