My parents have been divorced for nearly all my life after discovering early on that marriage is, for lack of a better word, hard.
I’m not bitter, though. I was two when they divorced. I don’t even have any memories of them together. As far as I was concerned, I had a mom who doted on me when I was with her in Indiana and a dad who doted on me when I was with him in Florida. I got two times the presents as any normal child. Good stuff.
My mom remarried. My dad remarried. My mom remarried again. My dad remarried again. I have more parents (6) than appendages (5). And, for the most part, they all get along. (My parents, that is. My appendages hate each other.)
They get along so well, in fact, that my mom, my dad, my stepmom and my brother and I all posed for a family picture together down in Florida a few days ago. (My stepdad took the smart route and stayed in Indiana.) We all stood, smiling, like one big, discombobulated family.
Sadly, divorce is commonplace in my family. Out of my four aunts and uncles, three of them have been divorced. I’ve never seen my divorced grandparents in the same room together. I even have a younger cousin who’s already divorced.
Some get along with their exes. Most of them don’t. So I suppose I should be happy my mom and dad are still on laughing terms, much less speaking terms.
I’m looking at the photo we took on Christmas Eve right now. And for a second, I wonder what it would have been like to grow up having a mom and dad in the same household. But then I wouldn’t have a nice stepmom and stepdad who care for me. Or my first stepmom and stepdad, who both still care for me. Or my wonderful stepgrandparents. All 50 million of them.
Divorce is never a pleasant thing. But it’s not the end of the world. Great things can come from the worst situations. And while I’m not happy any of my family members had to go through a divorce, I am thankful for all the people who have been brought into my life as a result.
It’s strange seeing my mom, my dad and my stepmom together in this picture. But all three are surrounding my brother and I. And that’s the important part.