I always marvel at men and women who mange to reinvent themselves after a divorce- with their kids in tow. To re-establish their families and create new relationships for themselves and their children- in essence to give birth to a blended family. It is a feat in and of itself- and one of these mothers ( who happens to be a friend and whip smart woman in her own right) is sharing the challenges and triumphs of her modern family with us right here in her column MY MODERN FAMILY. This week she tackles how she Keeps It Moving!
Guest Post By Tanya Green
People often ask me how I make it look so easy? The answer is always simple, keep it moving. My motto in life has always been-keep it moving. There are always those occasional life hiccups when we feel like saying I quit, this just sucks, but reality is if you have kids you can't just quit.
I clearly remember the moment when my ex-husband said I'm just not in love with you anymore. We were sitting on the floor in the kitchen playing with our 4 year old and 1 year old daughters and he just flat out said it. Not in love with you anymore.
What? What does that even mean? What is this in love concept? I love you, 10 years into our relationship and 7 into our marriage, but not IN love with you. Well there's a slap in the face. Hold on and let me digest that for a minute. Something is clearly wrong with this picture.
Fast forward six months and I come home to a newly husband-less house and my day completely wipes me out. My kids are off playing somewhere downstairs and I take this opportunity to just sit down. I find myself in a corner on that same kitchen floor, where only recently my life was completely flipped. And I just let it all go. I cry for a good few minutes; something I stay away from doing during the day. God forbid lest my girls see me crying. Then I realize my Sophie, my amazingly mature simply because she had to be, five-year-old is sitting next to me in the corner and crying.
“Mommy, she says, what's wrong? Why are we crying?” I take a second and then tell her what I strongly believe to be our new truth.
Sometimes life can be tough, but we are women, we were destined to be tested (that whole Eve thing screwed us from the get go) and it's ok to cry once in a while. So today we're going to take this 5 minute break from life, hug each other and cry. And then we're getting up and moving on. Life doesn't stop just because we're having a bad day.
She smiled at me, said ok and we cried.
I cried more for my baby than for my failed marriage. All I kept thinking was, this poor kid, why the hell does she have to deal with my stupid choices? Why does she have to lose her sweet innocence and grow up and face reality at 4?The tooth fairy is still real! Forget this, let's get up and dance.
So we started a new tradition from that day. Dance parties in the kitchen as often as possible. Blast some good tunes and dance it all out. After four amazing years of dance parties we've developed traditions. Sometimes it's a 30 second dance party for an awesome grade in school, other times it's a one minute jig for a tough task tackled and then there are those beautiful days when homework is done, dinner is in the oven and music is blasting and we're all just dancing away in the kitchen for a good hour. Amazing. Cindy Lauper couldn't be more proud. And when my current, unbelievably supportive and insanely incredible husband joined our family, he too was asked to join our dance parties. And sometimes he does, as does our almost one year old little boy. But often, when one of us has a tough day we'll just turn on our theme song and live, after all, girls just wanna have fun!
So to answer that difficult question, how do I make it look easy? One way: simple – I literally stop the madness of life and just dance.
Originally born in Kiev, Ukraine, Tanya Green is proud to call New York her home for the majority of her life. Besides teaching some of the best kids in our city at Brooklyn Technical HS, she's a mother to three and a wife to one 😉
She enjoys molding young brains and getting to know teenagers outside of the parent perspective. But even more so, she loves raising her two amazing young daughters and the newest addition, a little man. With a second marriage that has taught her so much about love and life she hopes to inspire others who may be struggling with the concept of life after divorce.