My Christmas was a blender. And No, I did not say “bender” as you might have confused my sentence. Christmas was a blender because I spent it with my boyfriend’s (Tanner) blended family. Let me tell you all about it.
Hi, my name is Marissa and I work for GYL family law firm. I am not an attorney and my background is not in law. I am the marketing and public relations contact. Over the years I have gotten to know the wonderful people at the firm and the partners particularly. I am also the nanny for Catie Young (Griffith) and John Griffith. I often feel like I am one of the family as I sit here and write with their cute dog Mumford cuddled up next to me.
I am going to share with you my Christmas experience from this year. I often find myself sitting back and taking it all in. I think about my anthropologist class I took in college and find that people are wildly interesting. What I had the pleasure of observing this Christmas was admirable.
My boyfriend’s parents divorced when he was just a toddler and when he has told me anything about it, he lets me know it was a peaceful and chill as possible. The divorced parents stayed away from talking poorly about each other and respected and honored the best interest of him and his brother.
On the important holidays, the once married parents come together to share it with their children and extended family. They sit at the same table as former spouses and are kind to one another. They also welcome each other’s new partners with open arms.
I have heard my boyfriend’s mom, Linda say things like, “Rhonda is totally cool” regarding his dad Roger’s wife. Linda brings Rhonda gifts and she talks to her as she would a friend meeting for lunch. Linda is now also married to a Roger, isn’t that something? Anyways, Roger came to his first Thanksgiving at the original Roger’s house this year and now the invite for the holidays stands.
Rhonda also invites her ex-husband, Gary to all the holiday traditions. Rhonda and Gary have three children together and share a wonderful relationship as co-parents.
On Christmas morning I was wrapping presents for Tanner’s family and was pleasantly surprised when I came across a gift for Gary.
“So, you get a gift for your stepmom’s ex-husband?” I said.
To that he replied yes, and I kept wrapping his gift. I write about family law and I investigate the behaviors of others when they are coping with divorce and dividing families into two. This is something I have never seen before and I am impressed beyond belief.
I applaud Roger, Rhonda, Linda, Roger #2, and Gary for keeping the peace and for meaning it. They truly embrace their shot at being friends as they share five grown children collectively. When I looked around the table at Christmas, I saw smiling faces and grown children who have a safe place to come home and to share a meal with both of their parents.
Lucky for me, my boyfriend had a wonderful experience with divorced parents and today this makes him a great man. I come from divorced parents and this is far from my story. This coming together thing is unlikely to happen. To be honest, I went home to Washington this summer to visit my mom and stepdad and I snuck a visit with my dad. Yes, I had to sneak it and to this day, no one in my family knows this.
Spending a Christmas with a wonderful and warm blended family was an experience I am grateful for. Our last post we published on Christmas Eve was all about navigating through the holidays when you don’t have your children. Amy Lass, who is a partner at the firm, challenged our readers to texting their ex-spouse wishing them a Merry Christmas and to mean it.
There are many ways we can choose to step up and put our pride aside. Wishing others well will in turn provide you comfort and peace. If this is hard for you, it is more than okay. Take it one day at a time and try to be better than you were yesterday.
We are coming into a new decade with new possibilities. Maybe Christmas 2020 will be the year where you can wish your former spouse a Merry Christmas for the first time. I am not saying you must come together and share a meal, although I would applaud you for that. Any kind gesture will go far.
I hope you had a lovely holiday and I wish you the best in the New Year. If you have any questions or concerns, I would love to hear from you. I run all questions by the partners at the firm and I have soaked up some knowledge myself as the marketing contact.