As a kid we all in some way desire to understand what created us. I was very aware from the beginning that my life was different than most. All of my cousins and friends had both a mom and a dad.
I would pose questions "where is my dad?" "why don't I live with my mom and dad?" "who is my dad?"
The answer was always the same, "don't worry about it. You live with us because we love you". Therefore, the only assumption I could make was that I had a dad somewhere who did not love me.
But that answer never really sat well with me. I suppose it sufficed my curiosity in my toddler years, but I quickly came to realize that there were some things I was being kept in the dark about. I felt like I was missing something, even though my mom and grandparents were very supportive of me. Why didn't I have a dad? The question never left me.
So when my mom got married right before I began kindergarten to my step-dad, I think in some way it was more for her to have provided a dad to me than a husband for her.
Unfortunately, I always knew he wasn't my dad and I never wanted him to be. He was the man that made me leave the only home I knew or understood - my grandparents house.
Now as an adult I realize these things are normal - people get married - kids have to transition, life goes on.. BUT as a kid my world was changing and I didn't understand it. All I knew was that I was going to live with a mom that worked a lot and a stepdad who thought he had me all figured out.
I would say "rebellious" would be the understatement of the year, but I became the strong-willed child overnight. I gave them all a run for their money. I would say part of my rebellious nature stemmed from being able to have anything I wanted with my grandparents - I had been spoiled. The other part was knowing the truth was being kept from me and the expectation was that I was supposed to just adapt to the things going on in my life.
Years passed and my relationship with my stepdad was more than shaky. He was a man set in his ways, and I was a child trying to find my own ways. He was my scapegoat for all things I didn't like in my life - and I was his.
My mom and I drew closer and she left her job at the news station to take a position with walmart corporate office - another job with a high work load, but she always made sure I got to everything - girls scouts, sports, day camps. I never missed an event... But I was missing something.
Fast forward to my 8th birthday... A baby brother was on the way. The son of my mom and my step-dad - his child. My mom was older - now the typical age to have a child.
Everyone was very excited, and I watched.