Living Happily Ever After


Officially A Stepmother

Prior to my unexpected life, most of my embarrassing moments involved…underwear.

Like the day in second grade I went to the restroom, accidentally and unknowingly tucked the back of my dress into my underwear, and returned to class where Kevin Wanebo (you never forget some moments, some people, do you?) pointed my mistake out to me and the rest of the class. White panties with pink rosebuds. That’s what I was wearing that day in my most embarrassing moment.

Until 2005. I was nine months pregnant with my fourth child, talking to a very nice, younger married man from my church congregation when suddenly I noticed he was looking anywhere and everywhere but at ME while we talked. Right about the moment I noticed that, I also happened to notice a cool breeze blowing in the vicinity of my “nether regions.” I looked down and was horrified to see…my skirt puddled on the floor around my ankles—leaving me standing there, once again (you guessed it!) in my underwear.

From that moment on, and thanks to a few other memorable moments, I was pretty sure I had the market cornered on embarrassment. And then in 2009, thanks to the actions of another, I’m pretty sure I proved it.

Ironic that second marriage moment #21 also involved underwear. Or as I like to call it, the moment I officially became my stepson’s stepmother.

It was accidental (as are many pivotal moments, I’m convinced.) I was getting ready for the day and hadn’t dressed yet, my stepson walked into my room to ask me a question and caught me without my clothes on. I wasn’t sure what to do; I didn’t want to embarrass him or me further, so I tried to ignore the fact I was standing there in my underwear, finished the conversation with him and tried to act like it was no big deal.

I sent a text at the conversation’s conclusion after my stepson left. To his dad, my husband. I texted: “It’s official. I am officially your son’s stepmother.”

He texted me RIGHT back for more details. I think my husband was probably panicked our relationship was “official” because I had disciplined his son or some dreaded event like that that my husband would need to get in the middle of and help smooth things over about. But I told him it was nothing like that.

It was much bigger. Underwear. Mine. So I guess it’s official. We’re family now. Water (or unmentionables) under the bridge.

“This morning when I put on my underwear I could hear the fruit-of-the-loom guys laughing at me.” (Rodney Dangerfield)

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