Momma Chel is a contributing writer to this community, as well as a mother raising several children in her expanded family. These are some of her thoughts regarding the subject.

Previous editions of this column can be found in the Monthly Columns Archives.

A Trip Down Memory Lane

This month, I’ve decided to stroll down memory lane and talk about some of our accomplishments/reflections through these last five years together as a poly family with two moms, one dad, and five children along with our various pets over the years!

Sassypants (our youngest girl) was only 2 and ½ years old when we started this journey. She doesn’t remember a life before three parental figures or four other siblings. It’s been a bonding experience to go through the stages of development with her and we all feel that we had lived and learned, so to speak, allowing us to better address situations as seasoned veterans of the parenting society! That is clearly not to say that we haven’t come upon some very unique situations with her! She easily called me Momma Chel and even introduced me as such to her Kindergarten teacher. In pre-school, she adamantly told her school mate that she in fact did have two moms. The teacher even had to step in and say that many children did, before her little temper got the best of her! She has pulled on our oldest boy’s heartstrings more than once to get her way and has been a source for pulling the family together at times.

Right before all of us moving in together, Nickel Ray (second youngest girl) turned five. She was chubby for her age having suffered breathing problems those first five years and being put on many steroids and such. We all resolved to get Ms. Nickel Ray healthy and prescription drug-free which we have succeeded in. Mainly, she has outgrown the breathing problems but still suffers occasionally rather than it being just the norm for her! She attended pre-school that first year and started excelling in all aspects of learning. We enforced this eagerness at home and we continued dealing with her moodiness. This year, she’s completing second grade and her love of learning has never wavered. Her tender, compassionate heart has touched each of the parents at times we needed it the most. Her moodiness has leveled out so dramatically, that she is just a constant, positive joy to everyone around her. She went from being afraid of her own shadow at five years of age to being determined to try anything and everything life has to offer, and with a passion too!

Our youngest boy, Ray, has been both a joy and has held some heartache too. He was very hurt over his mother’s divorce and still struggles to balance the visitation and different lifestyles between home and his biological Dad’s house. He has always been quick to assess a situation and try to gain the best outcome for himself in every situation. He was the first to try and befriend the adults individually to gain something for him. He eventually found out this approach wasn’t working to his favor and once he gained trust that all the adults in his life were going to always be there for him, he opened himself up and slowly became more confident to seek out our help in his changing world. He struggles emotionally and with his maturity as the parents have also struggled to keep a level head in dealing with his ups and downs. He is challenging at times but all of us feel an accomplishment when he’s having a good week and things are going good for him --- He’s helped us to learn to celebrate the small milestones and that is worth millions in our eyes!

Dancing Queen (oldest girl) was a slip of a girl back when our journey began. She is certainly not that girl anymore, but fast becoming a young woman with all the struggles that this entails. She had a hard time opening up to the idea of more parents and younger siblings, but has turned to both her moms for support/ideas on how to deal with the changes in her life. She has figured out how to approach each parent and with what subject to approach them with too! Approach moms with boy problems, dad with money issues and lots of hugs, approach T with shoes and clothes needs and mom with problems with friends! She has been invaluable by helping out with the younger kids and I have even overheard her giving advice to the younger girls on how to do something or handle some situation. She also has caused a few sibling battles along the way, but all in all has really loved each member of our family even when she has questioned the parental decisions.

Little Boom (oldest boy) was very backward toward us moving in together. He mainly sat back and watched, really trying to figure out how all of this was going to work out. He was protective of his mom and dad at first, and grew to trust that all the adults were attentive to each child’s needs and his fears then subsided. It has been easy for him to gain friends and for the friends to accept our family without much question. He was asked how he explains all of us (the parents/kids) and stated that he tells everyone that we’re kind of like family now. He has eased our girlfriend’s mind numerous times when she would start questioning whether this “family” was going to somehow “hurt” the children. He is a daily example of how we have raised him to be open, considerate and loving.

As for the parental units, we have had our ups and downs but through it all, we’ve kept the children at the forefront for all life decisions knowing that they deserve to be taken care of and loved before all other duties in life. We know that life will take us down many paths and our kids will be right there with us making the journey even more memorable as I’ve witnessed myself these last five years.

Momma Chel is a contributing writer as well as a member of this online Community. She can be contacted here or through our message board Forums.

Momma Chel; April 21, 2006


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