Saturday, March 19, 2011

Summer Sanders - My divorced family is perfectly imperfect

By: Summer Sanders

Something just happened that made me want to brag a bit about my parents. I can't talk about that "something" but I will say this, I am very proud of my them. They divorced when I was 7 and my brother was 9. I had no idea what "divorce" actually meant at the time and when they told me that my mom was moving out and getting her own place, I quickly drew up a plan where they could both live in our current house by sticking to a strict schedule when it came to the kitchen(the only room they both needed to use.) The plan went out the window and so did a little piece of my heart as I moved houses every six months for the next 10 years.

Don't get me wrong, I don't feel sorry for myself. I think divorce had a ton of positive affects on my life. It allowed me to REALLY get to know each of my parents. I am very proud of my relationships with my mom and dad. When you are a kid of divorce, you either talk about your feelings or you drown a little bit and WE TALKED. There are only a few fights that I remember between my mom and dad but they are far out-weighed by the great times. It was when I was about 12 years old or so when I noticed they started to become friends again.

Often times, my parents were the only two at our swim meets. So, they were kind of forced to talk to each other. I also like to think that they decided that it was worth it to try to patch up their broken relationship enough so that we could all hang out together as a "family" when needed. And, "when needed" ended up being quite often as time ticked on. Christmas', Thanksgiving's, birthday's and swim meets, we were often a mixed up random bunch, but we were together. My mom would bring her boyfriend, my dad would bring his girlfriend and my parents would, suck it up.

I was married when I was 24 and divorced 3 years later. I am thankful that we did not have any children and that our break was clean. Believe me, I know how difficult it was for my mom and dad to become friends, and I am damn proud of them for it. They have put my brother and I and our happiness before their own. They continue to do this now for us and even more so for their grandkids. Time is precious, and they are soaking up every second. My mom said to me the other day that the fact that her and my dad come together during the holidays is unique maybe even a bit strange. I told her that although I think it was unique 20 years ago, it is becoming more normal. In a way, they indirectly paved the way! Divorce can bring out the worst in people. I am proud to say that my parents are amazing and they have brought out the best in each other!

For more on Summer please click on the title link.

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