I love my ex-husband’s wife.
Wow, read that again. I love my ex-husband’s wife.
When I got married, never did I imagine or think I would get a divorce. It’s nothing you plan for. However, life had its twists, turns, and unfortunate events that took their toll on us and our marriage. With divorce and children, it’s hard to foresee the future of what can come, to clear the clouds and smoke and see the light and sun at the end. You can only hope and manifest that it ends up in the best version of a blended, co-parenting situation as possible. That’s what we found and have been building ever since.
I’ll spare you the relationship details, but after our divorce was final, we began moving forward and entering the dating world. I began hearing about the woman my ex was dating. Initially, I had my guard up because it was new, and I had mixed emotions trying to get through co-parenting, or a lack of it initially with my ex-husband. I was nervous. How would it be for my daughter, “how does she still get heard, how will things be done, who is Jami, and what are her intentions.” You name it, the mama bear in me kicked in full effect. It was my first birthday as a single woman. I remember being so distraught emotionally, and then I found out E would be meeting Jami for the first time, which added even more emotions at the time. It was just becoming more real, and I was curious if this would be a positive or drama. (I had already experienced the drama from his previous partner). I was not about to experience that again.
After Jami and my daughter met, and all I heard and could tell was she was a very kind, loving woman. I then began to seek out to meet since things were moving forward. It was my bonus daughter’s birthday when we first met. I planned to stop by the celebration and asked my ex-husband if we could also make it a meeting for the two of us. Jami truly was as sweet as ever. We greeted each other with hugs, laughed about our nerves, and watched the kids hang out. I left feeling very confident this would be a great outcome. Little did I know how great it would be.
We began communicating more, chatting here or there on text or phone. We learned we had similar interests, values, and a picture of what we wanted a blended family to look like. I learned the value of working out parenting plans or situations with her versus my ex. Not that he and I couldn’t, but it just was smoother between us moms. As their relationship progressed and they moved in together, my frustrations with parenting with my ex still existed. One day, I needed to exchange with Jami instead of E’s dad, and I was a bit nervous about all the questions of how it would go. It then ended up being THE BEST exchange. We laughed, I heard about E’s time with them, everything was organized so nicely, and Jami said goodbye to my daughter in such a genuine and caring way. From there, we discussed what we had always hoped to have with co-parenting, that we are here for the kids’ best interest. Agreeing that all have pasts, but none of that matters anymore when it comes to the kids and giving them the best versions of us and showing them a healthy example.
Here we are, 6 years later. Jami and I grab dinners together to catch up, celebrate birthdays and occasional holidays all as one. We share parenting tips and tricks. I spend time with her kids and consider them my family. We support each other. We are there for the vents, for the laughs, and even some tears over some wine and Brussels sprouts at our favorite, Cooper’s Hawk. We text, send gifs, share photos and videos of the kids. We take all the kids for movies, dinner, or the occasional city event. We can talk…for hours and always continuing to get to know one another. We understand and respect our situations, the relationships in the present as much as our past. My ex-husband and his wife are truly my families. It was the perfect mesh and outcome for unforeseen plans. I truly believe in some way we were all in our paths for a reason, maybe to spread love, to share for others, or so these 5 children will grow to know a beautiful blended family, surrounded by so much love.
We truly have meshed our family, and it has created a safe environment for not only my daughter but all the kids. Everyone understands we communicate as a united team and that all the kids can have comfort in both homes and consistency for E. My daughter is more than just heard by Jami. She is seen.
I would do everything all over again to be right here, to have my daughter and co-parent with her father and his incredible wife and their beautiful family of 7. It is possible.
Stay tuned for a part 2 Q&A follow up with us 🙂