Dear Little Miss,
You are about to become a big sister. You have nine years of experience to share with a little sister. I am pretty confident you are up for the challenge. Before my first born comes along, there are things that I want to tell my first child. I hesitate to call you my child, but you have taught me to be a parent and in that you are mine and I am yours.
I met you before I had any inclination I would be your step-mom. You were in a dog kennel arranging all of the dog toys. You came out of that kennel in a fury, waving your hands wildly and laughing. You were five and insanely energetic. You came up to me and asked me, “Who are you?” I told you, “I am Whitney.” Little did I know three years later I would be the one you got mad at because I make you blow dry your hair. I was overwhelmed by you then and not much has changed. Let me explain.
I lived 30 years without having to be an example to a little girl. So I did what any self-respecting adult would do. I played kickball and flag football. I went out to concerts and often drank one too many margaritas. I had the vocabulary of a wanna be sailor, which means I cussed a little. I lived my life answering to no one. It was a pretty exhausting and fun life, but missing something. Then I met your dad, he was…dry, but intriguing. I was baffled that the girl I had met a year or two before could be his daughter. Your dad was game changer because he came with you, and when I said, “I do,” I was a wife and a step-mom. All the sudden every past mistake, every cuss word, every facebook picture that was a bit over the top, every status update, I began to analyze. “Would I want you to see this?” I was overwhelmed, but whatever I was missing, I wasn’t missing anymore.
You have been patient with me, even when I am not very patient with you. (Seriously, don’t talk with food in your mouth!) So here we stand both learning what the title “step” means. How much do you have to listen to me? How much do I get to parent you? You and I missed something really important.
When you were born, you didn’t get to hear my voice. I didn’t get to hold you. I missed your first words, steps and first day of school. You didn’t feel my hugs or see me in the crowd at your first dance recital. We missed a lot of things with each other. We weren’t a part of each other’s plan. I think sometimes it makes it a bit difficult to like each other when we get into a battle of wit. I don’t know about you, but that is a tough pill to swallow.
I take comfort in the fact that I love you always. I think about you always. I work to fix my past mistakes because of you. I work to make you proud. I strive to be a role-model. Because at the end of the day, you teach me to be a parent, a mom. Your sweet little voice mails make me melt. Your pelican drawing makes me smile. I hope when all is said and done, I am working to just teach you how to be a respectful, lively and educated lady (at least most of the time, cause let’s face it, we all need a break). So you don’t have to like me all the time, but I hope you are proud. I hope that you can feel how much I love you, even when I make it really hard for you to like me.
Your Step-Mom, Mrs. Whit