The Ryan Webb and Lisa Teal-Webb Family
by Lisa Teal- Webb
I believe when I was growing up and dreaming of my wedding day, I dreamed of the wedding day, including my dress and my handsome husband waiting for me at the altar. What I did not dream of was my handsome husband waiting for me along with not one child but three cute little boys! Therefore, my life as I knew it changed and I began my journey as a childless Stepmom to three boys. Their ages when we met were 8, 5 and 4 years old. So Ryan and I jumped on this ride together and worked together to form our stepfamily.
My focus, my life and my priorities all changed. I know that the stepmoms out there that are reading this can relate to what I am about to say. "You knew what you were getting into". If any of us would have known "what we were getting into" we would have run and kept running! ((smoke behind us)) The stress and frustration and the overwhelming feeling of despair that I feel as a Stepmom I cannot express into words sometimes it is that *horrendous*. If I would have known what I was going to face; there would have been no Stepmom! I just wanted to be the best Stepmom I could be. I thought I would be a extra role model in their lives and I thought I would be attending a few soccer or football games here or there. I am sure most stepmoms will agree with me that their idea of a "stepmom" is different now than when they became one! There are/were many people that help me through this continuing journey. It is important that you have a support system. I know that stepmoms will agree having an outlet during this time is great and important to have for your sanity! I read and continue to read just about ANY stepmom book I can get my hands on. I also enjoy reading about other stepmoms that are having the same issues; so you know you are not alone in how women are facing this journey. Enlightened Stepmom group, Stepmom Central, Stepmom Magazine and many other positive stepmom groups on Facebook have been a fantastic source for me and I hope it continues to be for many other stepmoms.
If it weren't for my husband trying to understand and be kind and caring as I adjusted to being a stepmom and working full-time I probably would have not gotten through the first year of being a stepmom let alone those next 4 years. Thank God I did! We have been married 14 years. Working as a team and communication is the key. I am sure stepmoms like me; continue through their journey, each day it brings joy but also new challenges.
Walking on eggshells in my own home, I packed my bags several times and just the chaos from the kids (two of them having adhd) and trying to make sure things were done.
I felt like I had triplets ". Yes the boys are all different ages but I did not ramp up or start out with one at a time. I got all 3 boys at once and 4 boys aka WEASELS, if you include my husband in the package deal! My stepsons Tyler, Noah and Cole call me by my first name. I am also referred to as Lisa- Pizza, stepmudder (when they were younger), and the latest is Newb. When you have someone come to you and they need you for a cut above their eye or a nose bleed or paperwork filled out for camp. It makes your heart feel overwhelmed with a love that I didn't know I could have for someone's children. Again, they call me by my first name and they have a Mom.
When you see that you are making a difference in 3 young boy’s lives and shaping them to be young successful adults, it makes you smile and your heart bursts! At least mine does, with pride. I say that they did not choose me as their stepmom and I didn't choose them, I chose to be with their Father and they are my bonus.
Somehow throughout the years we have become a family or gang as I like to say! Tyler is very mature beyond is years and is in his 2nd year at the Ohio State University in the medical school program. He is also a 2nd Lt, in the Army and will be going to training for the Army this summer. He has been out on his own for about 4 years now. Noah has moved into his own apartment with a roommate he had his freshman year and he is now a junior at Wright State University. He is about hour and 15 mins away. He changed his major just last year, he was wanting to be Mechanical Engineer and realized that he thought business more suited him. He is now really thinking doing something with economic or statistics. Cole, well Cole is Cole, as we like to say in our house. He is funny and creative and keeps all in stitches with his wit! Cole started welding school this month and should be finished by May 2020
There is also a half-sister, Makayla we have been involved with since she was 14 months old. She now 11 years old and we share her with her biological mom. Her biological dad is not involved in her life and she chose to call Ryan, "dad." Guess what? I am Lisa aka Stepmom, shocker? LOL. She lives in our home and Ryan and I continue to do things for her. We are on round two of stepfamily life.
I have discovered through this journey that children seem to want security, a place to call home, some rules and structure (even if they think they don't), attention from their parents and acceptance. It is how they act and what they do for their children that matters most. If I could give you any advice about being a step-mom, I would say be interested and be involved in what your step children are doing. In my situation, I did not plan on being as involved as I have become over the years. I felt I was put in a position that either I could choose to not care and let my step-sons suffer or I could choose to step up to the plate and be there for them when their biological Mom was not able to or would not.
I chose to STEP up. I did not want the children to suffer as they were growing up. The more I became involved with homework, driving them to their activities, and Dr.'s appointments . Showing up at their concerts and sports events the more I felt connected with my stepson's. With the court case being over, and I am no longer working full-time, I am on good terms with their Mom and the relationship with the boys continue to grow and my husband and I have made it through "good times and bad" in a test of our marriage vows very quickly. I have forgiven but I have not forgotten and we still continue to have snags. So my journey continues with my stepdaughter.
Being a stepmom in this journey you learn when to step-up , step aside or step out.
National Stepfamily Day
September 16-22 Celebrating the whole week!
Stepfamily Day kicks off on September 16th
Celebrate the entire week with your family!
National Stepfamily Day and Week