Erin Careless’s Challenge to YOU
I sealed the envelope, stuck on the stamp, and dropped the card into the mailbox. Too late to turn back now…
I sent a Christmas card to my husband’s ex-wife. The mother of my stepchildren. The “other woman”.
Because she’s in my life, for better or worse. The mom and I are civil, but not friends. I wouldn’t necessarily suggest sending a Happy Holidays Ho-Ho-Ho card to a mom who is high conflict. But for me, this was about extending an olive branch. This was about doing my best to be gracious, to be a bigger person, to KNOW that I’ve done my best to be kind.
We are hosting the kids for Christmas, which will be great… I love having the kids over the holidays. The movies, the matching pjs, the hot chocolate! But that also means that their mom will be on her own. I don’t think she minds – she’s not big on Christmas – but I still wanted to reach out to her. To wish her a peaceful holiday season, and even to suggest we take the kids for dinner in the New Year. I know! Look at me go!
So I dropped the card into the mailbox. Who knows what her reaction will be? Maybe she’ll smile and put the card on a table with her other cards. Maybe she’ll use it to start a fire in her wood stove. Doesn’t really matter. It’s the thought and the effort that counts.
I challenge you, as an amazing and thoughtful stepmom, to wish her a Merry Christmas. (Unless the dynamics are truly high conflict and you do not engage with her out of fear – protecting yourself comes first!)
Wish her a Merry Christmas or Happy Holidays. Give her a card, perhaps even a small token gift. I know, it’s not always easy, but let’s make 2018 a year of peace. A year of healing. A year of love. Be the bigger person, be your best self. Be YOU.