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<p>Not sure who all may be around that might remember me - for some reason a year or so ago any time I came here my entire computer would go whacky and shut down, so I've visited only once or twice, but for some reason over the last couple of days Mothering.com seems to like me again! Here's a quick background on my story: My kids were 9, 5, and 4 months when my ex walked out in August 2003. I found out later that he had been cheating for at least a year. I had no clue and was completely devestated. I was a stay at home mom, 30, hadn't finished college, and we had all the normal debt, which he pretty much left with me. I struggled a lot those first few years, but managed to work two part-time jobs, pay things down, keep the house, and survive with three kids. I avoided dating like the plague. Several guys asked me out - and they might have been very nice guys, I don't know - but I wanted to avoid that whole roller coaster of men in and out of my life while my kids were young. And I knew that none of them were "the one" and I didn't want to waste anyone's time. In May 2007 (almost four years after ex left) the right one called. He was someone I knew casually from activities our children were both involved in, and I knew his younger brother from school. His son was 15 and lived with him full time. We went out to dinner, then several more dinners out, and by August I knew he was the one. We had lots of ups and downs - it's hard to date as a grown up, especially when there are kids involved! We broke up twice, the second time for several months. But we always lived each other and knew even through the struggles that we were "supposed" to be together. It was just a case of getting everybody's ducks all in a row so we could work it all out. Here we are, almost three an a half years later, and I'm happy to tell you that in August I was surprised with a gorgeous ring and a tearful proposal, and we are getting married next May. Our kids are now 18, 17, 12, and 7 and they are all thrilled for us. We aren't going to do the traditional "blending" right away. He's going to come live with me and my kids, but we're going to keep his house as well (and it's only a mile away from mine) because 1. His son and I have a great relationship but he is 18 and doesn't really need "mom-ed" if you know what I mean, and 2. His son and my daughter date (but that's a whole other post!). Anyway, that's my update, if any of you are interested. I'm hoping that I will continue to be able to log in here, and if you don't mind, I'm hoping to continue to post support and advice here. It's been a long seven year journey for me - but there is happiness at the end of all of that struggle. Stay strong single mamas!</p>
 

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<p>I remember you and your story!</p>
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<p><span><img alt="jammin.gif" src="http://files.mothering.com/images/smilies/jammin.gif"> sounds like some good things are happening. Congratulations on your engagement!</span></p>
 

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<p>Congrats, mama! I love hearing these stories because they give me hope. :)</p>
 

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<p>Hi sweetheart, I remember you. I am so happy this is what your life is like now!  I know this has been such a wild ride for you.   All the best!</p>
 

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<p>Congratulations!  I remember you talking about how hard it was to date and also be the parents of kids that are dating each other.  I'm glad it's all working out.</p>
 
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