Thursday, August 3, 2017

Fun: Both his grandmothers were my ex-wives...

Both of my grandsons have graduated from high school, but I'd like to share a story from 1999 about my first grandchild's first birthday..

My Grandson's Birthday


My first marriage was in the 1970s. My first ex-wife had a son from a previous marriage, and we had a son together. Joel was born in Louisiana in the middle of the 1970s.

My second marriage was in the 1990s. My second ex-wife had a daughter from a previous marriage. Dawn was born in the same summer as Joel, but across the country in Chicago.

By 1996, I had one son, one step-son and one step-daughter. I never legally adopted the two step children, but I did roll them into my households and treated them all equally.

My second wife and I established a household near Atlanta, Georgia. Fortunately (from a parents' perspective), one or the other of our kids seemed to have a boyfriend/girlfriend outside the house.

Joel and Dawn actually became pretty good friends. We'd heard there were discussions when one of them dumped their unhappiness or frustration with an outside relationship on the other.

Eventually, Joel moved out to set up his own household for a pending marriage. When Joel's engagement suddenly ended, Dawn moved into Joel's apartment, ostensibly as a paying roommate. When we visited their new home they each had their own bedroom.

At least initially.


Joel and Dawn's friendship became something more. It wasn't long before they announced their intention to marry each other!

They were "steps" but they hadn't been raised together. The kids didn't even meet until they were 18 years old. By now they were twenty and had been adult friends for a couple of years.

Dawn's father had recently passed away. She asked me to walk her down the aisle and give her away at the wedding. I accepted the honor. It didn't feel awkward. I approved of their choices of each other, and I was pleased to present the bride to her groom.

I'm sure both mothers were there, but I only remember the newlyweds. I'm sure each mother has her own story and perspective about that wedding day. 🌝

That was in December. Dawn's mother and I ended our marriage the next spring, but the kids were off to a good start.

Number one grandson was born a year later, and a year after that he had a party for his first birthday. (That's what provides the punchline to this little story.)

By this time, Bobby had come into my life. My time with Bobby was greater than the sum of years of my two marriages. (11 years vs 6 years + 4 years).


A first grandchild's first birthday is special, and Dawn did the party right!!

When cake time came, Dawn stripped Kyler down to his diapers and plopped in his highchair. She put a plate of cake and bowl of ice cream on his tray. Kyler immediately put one hand into the cake and the other into the ice cream! (I remember a big grin on his face at his discovery and delight has he explored the possibilities. Didn't he have two hands to use, after all?)

Both of his grandmothers were taking pictures from across the room, safely out of food range.

I was watching this great occasion with pleasure because of the celebration that it was, and with a little amusement at the dynamics: both of the grandmothers were my ex-wives and Bobby, as my date, was peering in from the hall.

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