StudioDD_LayerWorksNo275 (purple heart cluster)
Story Scrapbook challenge freebies


My parents divorced when I was 12. My other siblings went to live with my mom, while my younger brother Sean and I stayed with our dad. I wanted Dad all to myself, after all the turmoil we'd been through. But he'd gone and fallen in love with a new someone, a young woman named Phoebe. I was a just barely a teenager, I had moved homes and schools several times in just the past year, and now undergone this enormous upheaval. Even with the hope of moving forward after the finality of the divorce, looking forward to calmer times to come, I was not happy or settled by any measure.

And into this struggling-to-cope young girl's world came Phoebe. She was warm and inviting, offering love and peace and waiting for me to be ready to accept a new connection, a new relationship. I railed against her efforts for at first. It was so much to adapt to and my life had been in such disarray. But the weeks and months went by, and suddenly one day, I realized I was missing out on a wealth of support and comfort by holding her off because of my past pain. It was a light bulb revelation, and I changed my attitude overnight. After those first few tentative positive responses to her overtures, miraculously, over days and hours, she became my confidant and trusted friend.

This new grownup in my life was someone who could be there for me in a very different way than one of my biological parents, without all the past challenges and hurdles. Phoebe listened to my woes, shared my joys, laughed and enjoyed our long conversations. Together with my dad, she responded to my aching need for structure and consistency, for stability and predictability along with love and attention. We began having regular dinnertimes and we all had mealtime chores that we took turns doing. She and my dad planned family dinners at the lake, outings to the local university women's basketball games and firefighters' softball games. We made fudge and blackberry jam together, and crafted little dried-apple dolls and paper Christmas ornaments. Together, we built close, happy memories for our newly reinvented little family.

Phoebe also taught me social graces like writing thank you notes, quietly setting an example and appreciating my efforts. She opened my mind and heart to the world of giving to people outside of our close circle of family and friends, a gift of awareness that has influenced me to share time and money with many others over the years. So many ways in which she had an enormous impact on my life, through her grace and example. She will always be precious to me and I'm forever grateful she came into my life.