how to talk to your twenty something

Ha, I have no idea.  Today my step son Oliver is 22!.   Good for him, but that means I”VE AGED TOO.  Kids are cruel.   He is a wonderful young man who has been very patient with my loud, outgoing ways, which are not his.  A few years ago he even played  along with me on a video, “How to talk to your teenager”.  An experience that was probably close to running through bees while dripping with honey.  But, performance is like restaurant work in this family.. it’s hard not to be brought in ( or brought down.

So happy birthday to the first person who made me a “mom like” person.  I love you Oliver.


I Missed My Stepson

Yes, the one who looks just like Nick Jonas of the Jonas Brothers, and Sunday he came back for 24 hours. This is the month where he is taking many groovy trips, so Sunday was our only day with him. He had been gone a week before I realized I missed him. A friend’s mom said, “You miss a 14-year-old?”  Well, yeah, he may not always be Chatty Cathy, but he is no drama and we feel like more of a family when he is here. I do love him, even if I can’t be as demonstrative with him as I would my daughter.

Nick Jonas

When he walked through the front door, I wished I had had my camera ready. Vivien gave his legs a big bear hug, her head barely rising above his knees. My husband mentioned that Oliver hadn’t seen her new play equipment, so Vivien and Oliver walked out toward the back hand-in-hand and it was a microcosm of male/ female relationships.

Vivien: “Oliver, do you like my new dress?”

Oliver: “Huh, what?”

Vivien: “Oliver, do you like my new dress?”

Oliver: “Oh, yeah.”

He is always more interactive and involved with her if I back off. Funny how me rushing in the room saying, “Please love each other!!!” doesn’t seem to foster closeness the way hiding in the kitchen does. I keep one ear or eye out to take in the charm of their teasing and cuddling. I want to join in, but I know if I do, I clamp him down. I think she is so lucky to have a big brother, so I stay back. Maybe that’s what all parents have to do, not just step parents.

[Image: Kevin Winter, Getty Images]

Step Mommies

From time to time, it’s good to hear from a mother wiser than myself – my mom!

My mom, Morency, not only raised three girls but has run her own small private school for close to 30 years. She deals with kids who would otherwise fall through the cracks, so I think she has a lot of insight.  Since I am a step mom, I wanted to ask her about the step parents she has known through the years.

Anyone who has had that job knows it can be a little dicey to navigate. And I am lucky. I never had the ABC Afterschool Special moment I thought I would have, a step child running down the hall, screaming, “Leave me alone, you aren’t my mother!” as they slam the door to their room.