I can still remember the day that I first heard her call me Mom. I had always been Celeste before that.
A conversation a few weeks ago is still being replayed in my head. I had made the following comment early one morning “step mom, adopted mom, whatever you want to call me.” Her reply was “You’re just my Mom”.
I adopted my daughter when she was four, eleven years ago. Her father is her biological father and is also my ex-husband. Her biological mother, her father’s first wife, died of cancer before her first birthday. I have full physical custody following the divorce.
I know in my heart we were led to each other for a reason. I did not pay attention to the warning signs before getting married. The day I walked down the aisle I told my dad I knew I shouldn’t be getting married. I still walked down that aisle. Something was guiding me, something brought us together. Something has kept us together. She says this is crap and that nothing led us to each other.
I gave her my family, sisters, nieces, nephews and parents. They give her love and protection like their own. I give her everything I can, everything I always wanted. I have made so many mistakes and I hope she will forgive me one day. I know I lack a fundamental maternal instinct and often times don’t know what to do (so I turn to my sister). I know that she will take my poor parenting skills and make better decisions when she becomes a mom.
There are people out there that don’t make me feel like I am a mom because I didn’t give birth to her. They hold conversations and I feel awkward, purposefully excluded. Is it my perception or reality, I do not know. My true friends never, ever make me feel like that and I am thankful for that.
Most Mother’s Days I am alone, or with my own mother. It usually ends up being the weekend she is with her dad and he never offers for her to stay with me (I always make sure she spends Father’s Day with him). My only hope for today is that she is at her biological mother’s grave, spring cleaning, planting flowers and remembering the woman who gave her life, showing respect to the woman who gave her life, the woman she is forever tied to, who will always be her first mom.
Whoever you are, where ever life has brought you, whatever cards the universe has dealt you, whatever choices you have made, my wish for you is love and peace today. Perhaps one day, my own identity crisis will dissolve.