“For I know the plans I have for you…saith the Lord”

“For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts.” –Isaiah 55:9

Has anything ever happened to you that you would have never thought? That only God could make happen?

I did not ever expect to be a step-mom. I’m sure I had thought about step-moms before, but probably not in a positive light. My view of step-mothers came from Disney, where they were all evil and mean. Of course I knew that they all weren’t like Cinderella’s evil stepmother, but I always had this view of a step-mom being a lady who had no type of connecting ability with the children, and who took this nice caring dad away from his kids and turned him into a stressed man trying to please his new wife. I definitely stereotyped the stepmom role.

My view is a little different now.  I’ll tell you a little bit of a backstory with Abe—I met him in our singles class, having known about him and his family for a while but never actually interacting with him. So when I saw Abe carrying a cute little girl to the nursery on Sundays I assumed it was his niece and never gave it a second thought. When we started going to singles activities and hanging out with everyone together, I kept being very attracted to him. I liked everything I saw about him—his cute blonde hair, awesome smile, and big muscles (to me, he seemed like the strongest guy I had ever seen.) J  Some of the things I first noticed and liked about him were the ways he treated and loved our singles’ director’s kids, the way he was liked by all the guys, the way he didn’t flirt with any of the girls (most single guys did), and the way he didn’t have to be the center of attention. We played hide and go seek in the dark at our church until 2 AM one night, and when my phone died he volunteered to let me have his for a light and he would hide without a light. I thought that was so gentlemanly…I didn’t find out until later that he had liked me from afar the whole time and that’s why he volunteered his phone. 😉 We had a pool party with our class and while most the guys were busy pushing the girls in the pool, Abe was doing flips and stunts with our director’s sons, and they were having the time of their lives. (Abe did come around later though and push me in the pool…and then helped me out with his strong muscles! J) Then when we played Capture the Flag, he split up the teams and made sure we were on the same team. Again, I thought that was coincidence and felt like I was just lucky, only to find out later it was Abe’s plan all along! So slowly over the summer of 2013 I felt my heart and emotions leaning towards and falling for Abe Phillips. I began to search for him at church, and my brothers could always tell if I had seen or talked to him or not, based on my countenance when we were driving home. THEN, my sister dropped a bombshell on me. I finally had the courage to admit what my family all knew, that I really liked this guy in the singles class. So I told Tricia about it, and she made the little comment that made a big difference in my life. “Oh, he’s the one with the little girl? She’s so cute!” Umm, what?? I had no idea about Kali until after I knew I liked Abe. He never hid her from me, I was just oblivious…I remembered some of the girls talking to him about how cute Kali was, but I honestly thought it was his niece. Every time she was mentioned, it went straight over my head. But now I knew. And my sister willingly filled me in on a lot of other stuff that I had missed about him too. Apparently he had had a crazy life while I was away at college! 😉  Now, Abe and I weren’t even talking at this point…I was just majorly crushing on him and was excited even just to catch sight of him up in the balcony while I was playing the piano. We had never texted, had a full length conversation, or admitted we liked each other. It was very early on, so there would be no reason for him to tell me about his background at this point. I was pretty surprised, to put it mildly, but we weren’t in a relationship so all I could do was wait and see what happened. It honestly didn’t diminish how much I liked him… I knew he was getting his life back together, and I knew that every Sunday morning and night and Wednesday I saw him in the balcony from the piano.  And that my interest in him was still there, even after knowing everything. So I decided to just wait and see what God did. If he liked me back, then I could see where it leads. If not, then I knew God had different plans. And all the while he already liked me…he actually liked me before I ever liked him so much! We FINALLY started texting (on a group message with all our singles friends…sorry guys!) and I remember the exact Monday night after texting on a group message all weekend, when he texted me on my own phone from his phone for the first time. I remember teaching my Monday night piano lessons and thinking, was he just being nice and carrying on the conversation on Friday and Saturday, or will he text me again tonight? If he texts me again I KNOW he must like me! And in the middle of the lesson my phone buzzed…and after the lesson I excitedly checked and my heart overflowed to see his name and a “How was your day” text. So….the rest is history…..and now, I find myself, of all things, a step-mom to the love of my life’s other love, his daughter Kali.

So two weeks into the step-mom life, how’s it going? It’s going…good. It really is good. I wake up earlier than I ever used to…including Saturdays. I’ve changed a lot of diapers…I used to literally be incapable of doing that (ask Bob and Mal!) I’m still getting used to being called ‘Mommy,’ but Kali is still getting used to calling me that so we’re working on it together. I bought a book called “My Mom and Me” that you can personalize with pictures and spaces to write stuff in, and asked Abe if that was overdoing the whole “mom” thing and he said it wasn’t. Kali loved it! I love living with Kali. And Abe of course. J We have some fun moments and cute moments and tough moments. She’s had a lot of changes and a lot of hard things in her three little years and I hope to make it the best for her that I possibly can. I love being Kali’s stepmom.

I love it when she looks at me and says, “I was polite today mom!” after we’ve had several talks about asking nicely for things.

I love it when she wakes up and comes in our room in the morning and comes over to my side and just wants to cuddle with me.

I love it when she wants to be with me, doing whatever I’m doing, 24/7. Even when I’m trying to sweep the floor or do the dishes…

I love it when she copies me. She hates cereal with milk in it…and then she looked at my bowl and wanted her own, and ate it all.

I love it when she wants me to do her hair like Elsa’s. Or better yet, when she asks me to do her hair so it looks like mine.

I love it when she begs me to match with her. She knows her colors, and she knows if we’re really matching or not!

I love it when she says I love you mommy, when she calls me Flossie and then giggles and says I mean mommy, or when she calls me “Flossie-mommy” all one word.

I just love it all!

The first month that Abe and I were dating, even though I didn’t know if we would get married or not, I bought a pretty notebook and wrote a letter to Kali. I knew she wouldn’t have many special things from her mom and I wanted her to have something special if I ever did become her mom. I wrote to her every month that Abe and I have been together so far. I told her about how she got used to me, the first time she spent the night with me, the way she grew to love my family, how she reacted when daddy and I got engaged. I told her how brave she is walking with her braces and casts and how she doesn’t let her physical limitations limit her spirit—she still does everything all the other kids do, and works twice as hard at it! I told her how her courage gives me courage to face life’s hardships with faith and determination. I wrote to her how she at three years old has changed my life, and that no matter how many other kids I have she will always be my oldest, the first child who called me mom and taught me what it meant to love with a mother’s love.

I know that Kali and I might never share the bond that biological moms and daughters have, but I love her with all of my heart and hope to always be there for her when she needs me.

Being a step-mom is going good.

~Flossie

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