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I wrote this post on Friday, December 30th, 2016

My sister Tracey went to Haiti for 3 months when I was about 13 years old and she brought back a bucket hat for me that read, “What’s Mine is Yours.” I wish I had kept it.

My ex-husband is getting married today, fifteen minutes from the very minute that I am writing this actually, to a woman who is everything that I am not. While I am obnoxious, she is gentle. While I am obsessive, she is easy-going. While I am loud, she is quiet. I dictate, she listens. I’m hard around the edges, and she’s got a soft nature. But we share one thing in common, that I know for sure, anyway. We both love my kids.

We both love my kids. Her kids. They’re ours, now, in 13 minutes. Holy shit, right? Wow, divorce is fun. A married couple figures out that they don’t love each other enough or in the right way or whatever it is that they figure out and then all of a sudden they give up rights to whomever gets to step into their kids’ lives. Sometimes, the stepparent sees the biological parent’s child(ren) more than the biological parent does. Can I hear another “holy shit?” Thank you.

So, here I am, 11 minutes until my kids get a new parent, and I’m hanging with Callum listening to Ray Lamontagne and eating cheesies, crumbs spilling down my shirt, dried bits of play dough stuck to my socks, and while yeah, I’m often guilty of saying positive shit that I only 75% mean just because of the whole “positive thinking makes happy people” philosophy but this time, just this one time, I swear, I’m going to say something that I 100% mean. Ready?

I like her. My kids like her, and they probably even love her. My Jake, the male cutout of my DNA, the kid that hates cake and pie and shaving and whom, out of spite, hates anything that anyone really likes, likes her. And that says a lot. She’s got a good thing going on.

So, with seven minutes left until my kids become her kids too, I will unfurl my grip. Here, in the middle of our modest little family room, with Peppa Pig and Callum as my witnesses, I will share.

Two minutes.

To my kids’ stepmom,

May your heart carry what buckles mine. May your eyes see what I have to squint for. May you love easily in ways that come harder for me. And may you know that if you don’t or if you can’t, I’ve got them.

What’s mine is yours, cradled within the sacred space of this particular developing country.

Love, Suzy

(Like a typical ex-wife stalker,  I scored these pictures from the ceremony):


{ 26 comments… add one }
  • Megan @ Meg Go Run January 5, 2017, 5:18 pm

    Your kids are GORGEOUS!!! I love that picture of them! Obviously I cannot relate to any of this, so the only thing I can think of to say is that I am TRULY HAPPY so many people love your children!!! 🙂

    • suzy.suzyheather@gmail.com January 6, 2017, 12:52 pm

      Right?!?! So many people love our kids. My ex’s wife has family in Edmonton too, and she has a tonne of close friends that my kids see regularly and they’re all really great people. Score!

  • Helly January 5, 2017, 5:26 pm

    I love you, Suzy. So much. Man, I’m glad I found you.

    • suzy.suzyheather@gmail.com January 6, 2017, 12:51 pm

      Each time we talk, I kick myself for not meeting you guys in Vancouver that day. DAMMIT. I’m glad we met in AZ, but still…it’s never long enough. We’d be fast IRL friends. XO

  • Kelly January 5, 2017, 5:37 pm

    So I love that you said this. I think your words are just beautiful and amazing. But I love it even more because I know her and feel like you’ve spoken all truth about her. Cheers to a beautiful welcome to her into your life, in this capacity. #allthehearts

    • suzy.suzyheather@gmail.com January 6, 2017, 12:50 pm

      Well I feel quite smug that I’m such a good people-reader then, if I spoke a lot of truth about her after knowing her for such a short time! Thank you Kelly, and cheers right back atcha. 🙂

  • San January 5, 2017, 5:38 pm

    God, I wish every divorced couple could talk so candidly and positively about their ex-partner’s new spouse. Isn’t it a good thing to have another “great person” to help raise your kids?

    I have a few friends in relationships with (divorced) Dad’s and dealing with the exes, they tell me, are a nightmare – not because of my friends, but because of the exes’ personal hangups.
    It’s childish and I wish people could just grow up.

    Kudos to you, Suzy.

    • suzy.suzyheather@gmail.com January 6, 2017, 12:49 pm

      Thank you San. My ex’s wife makes it easy for me to appreciate her, for sure. And I’m glad I don’t let my personal issues interfere with my kids’ relationship with her. I’m an idiot in so many ways, but for some reason, the grace train made a stop at my station for me on this one.

  • Clare January 5, 2017, 8:42 pm


    • suzy.suzyheather@gmail.com January 6, 2017, 7:55 am

      Thanks for the pics. Shhhh…. ha ha ha ha!

  • Lisa @ Mile by Mile January 6, 2017, 2:09 am

    Im so happy for you and your kids that your ex is marrying someone you all like! It seems like that doesn’t happen very often. The best part is that you can admit it- I feel like it can be easy to get caught up in hard feelings or jealousy and to be able to see that someone is a good person. Your kids look great in the wedding pictures! Im so glad this worked out well for all of you.

    • suzy.suzyheather@gmail.com January 6, 2017, 7:55 am

      Jealousy can be a bit of an animal!

  • meredith (The Cookie ChRUNicles) January 6, 2017, 2:43 am

    uh huh. uh huh. uh huh. so many things for me to say here! lol. I applaud your strength because gd knows, this is never easy even when the new person is nice and the kids like her. you are a super strong and kind person for sharing this honest post! obviously all situations are different (like, um, mine) but I think you are blessed to be able to say and mean these things, as hard as it is. I’m going to stop typing now because anything else I type just goes into ranting detail about my situation and it’s just not worth my finger strength. ha.

    • suzy.suzyheather@gmail.com January 6, 2017, 7:54 am

      I bet some people have a hard time with new spouses that are nice, because if they think of it as a competition, then they might feel like they’re losing. Maybe even some super insecure ex wives would actually rather their ex marry a bitch, just so that they can feel like they’re “winning” with their kids. I bet that happens a lot more than we think, and that is tragic because the only people that suffer are the kids.

      Your situation is BANANAS. She is a bitch, and you’re the gentle and kind one, secure enough to not feel like you’re “winning.” Because ummm…. she makes it easy for you to win anyway… ha ha!!

  • Allie Capo-Burdick January 6, 2017, 2:49 am

    Wow. Just wow. There is so much here but mostly I am in AWE of you. I’m not sure I could write and mean what you are writing here but, you’re obviously a better person than I am 🙂
    Here’s to the future of your growing family!!

    • suzy.suzyheather@gmail.com January 6, 2017, 7:52 am

      I can only mean what I write because she’s a sweet and gentle person. Thank you Allie!!!!

  • Susie @ SuzLyfe January 6, 2017, 3:54 am

    You are magnificent. I hope every divorced and remarrying couple reads this. Listen, new wife-in-law: take good fucking care of those kids, and don’t be a bitch to Suz.

    • suzy.suzyheather@gmail.com January 6, 2017, 7:51 am

      Well, I mean, I lucked out. So not every divorced and remarrying couple is going to have this kind of situation, right? If their ex marries a legit douche, it’s going to be a lot harder to be nice because they don’t authentically like them. It’s a tough sitch.

  • Wendy@Taking the Long Way Home January 6, 2017, 3:55 am

    I LOVE THIS! More often than not, I see so much jealousy and animosity towards the ex’s new spouse. But everyone once in a while, I’ll come across a really amicable situation and it warms my heart.

    You’re a good person. <3

    • suzy.suzyheather@gmail.com January 6, 2017, 7:48 am

      Me too! And those amicable situations are the ones that have inspired me so much. There are a whole lot of them, but we only hear about the bad ones (maybe because they’re more exciting).

  • Chris January 6, 2017, 4:53 am

    You’ve come a long way, my friend! Glad you posted the pic of your kids- wow are they ever mirroring the fast paced growth over here! Teens are even more dramatic than the change from baby to boy! Your kids are all gaining so much from the efforts you four adults are exerting into making these relationships – may they put the same love, commitment and tenacity into their own relationships. And hugs to you.

    • suzy.suzyheather@gmail.com January 6, 2017, 7:47 am

      Thank you so much Chris! I think you’re right about teens undergoing a more dramatic change than baby to boy. Especially with all that hair….

  • Meghan@CleanEatsFastFeets January 6, 2017, 8:30 am

    You don’t give yourself enough credit. So many people wouldn’t be able to do or say what you’ve just done. You are a remarkable woman. I applaud you.

    • suzy.suzyheather@gmail.com January 6, 2017, 12:47 pm

      Thanks Meghan. I know you’re not the type to hand out praise if it’s not warranted, so I’ll take it.

  • Ana January 9, 2017, 9:55 am

    OMG Woman! You are making me cry! My ex-husband recently started dating and while I find myself wanting him to be happy, I have come up with a mean nickname for his girlfriend and her children (horse face, in case you were wondering, but I won’t say what I call her kids, it’s not as mean).

    Right now I’m very irritated, because it’s my son’s birthday and his Dad took him to DC with her, and I won’t see him today. It’s killing me a little inside to not see my son on his birthday, but I also know that we already celebrated his birthday and he is always in my heart.

    I hope to one day have your grace, and call her by her name instead of the mean nickname. I never use her nickname to my son, I want to pretend to him that she doesn’t bother me.

    • suzy.suzyheather@gmail.com January 9, 2017, 5:51 pm

      Nicknames are a great way to alleviate the tension with a trusted friend/spouse (as long as we keep it from the kids). Sometimes a good laugh is all we need, and then we can square up and be mature again. If we’ve got an insecure, hateful, negative core, then that nickname will be destructive. If we’ve got a healthy, well-adjusted confident and loving core, then the nickname won’t hold any weight; it will float off into the atmosphere with our giggles. I will neither confirm nor deny the existence of nicknames in this particular situation. 😉

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