Mama Bear: Being A Step-Parent

Being a step-parent.  I always thought being a Mama would be the hardest thing in the world.  It turns out it’s the most natural, fluid and enjoyably hard experience in the world for me.  Starting with the pains of childbirth, teething, terrible twos, terrible threes (the terrible twos never stopped with mine!), fiery fours and so on.  Every minute exquisite and rewarding but scary and hurtful too. To me though, it has been like breathing. I am Mama Bear, I live for my cubs, I teach, nurture and encourage. I thrive watching them bloom and grow. I am amazed on a daily basis how I managed to create such astoundingly beautiful creatures.  

Being A Step-Parent

I thought being a step-parent would be just as breezy. I couldn’t have been more wrong. You have to work at it twice as hard. Take twice as much pain for them, take their anguish, remembering to relish the small wins and build on them. Forever trying to not tread on toes, to not try and usurp, and all the while to still be Mama Bear to your own flesh and blood. By being a step-parent you have to be a constant balancing act. Trying to not be autopilot. Trying to think what would the non-resident parent say, think, feel, want…? Trying with all your might to be a mindful parent all round.

I wear my stretchmarks with pride, they are a map of every kick and movement of my cubs. I am learning to accept my worry lines from frowning and worrying, the white hairs from stress and sleepless nights worrying about a child not from my womb, but my cub all the same. I am Mama Bear, you will hear me breath my last before you will ever hurt any of my children. You will also hear me cry as I stumble and fall, learning how to try my best at being a step-parent. Learning how to breathe a whole new way. I will not give up. No matter how hard the path.

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