We just finished celebrating our daughters' birthdays with a lovely, fattening, delicious dinner at Red Lobster. It's difficult to get us all together these days and we didn't have Molly and Beau due to other plans, but we were thrilled to get the five of us, including Adam, plus Sarah's Justin.
Sarah is 25 and Erin is 28 this year. Hard to believe since they came to me fully formed when Sarah was 8 and Erin was 11, part of my new, blended family when Scott and I married 17 years ago.
Erin and Sarah lived with us for a number of reasons, but it was always a joy for me as they are amazing women as they were amazing girls. But they were my stepdaughters, not my daughters really, since they had a mother, Robin, who loved them happily, deeply, completely.
And they loved her, too. How could you not since Robin was an angel among humans.
And then she died, suddenly, horribly, unexpectedly and the girls became mine. It was unspoken, mutual, easy. . . a passing of the torch from a woman I loved to me. A bequest which I embraced and have rejoiced in ever since.
Robin would be so proud of her girls. They have graduated from college and are living full lives, discovering their talents, gifts and potential more every day. They are like her in different ways. Erin has her beauty and her courage. Sarah has her compassionate spirit and her gentleness.
I have them both now, a gift from their mother to me, that I unwrap with gratitude on their birthdays.
Our family is different, many will say. But it is also seamless, beautiful, complete. We are blessed indeed.