I’m One of the Lucky Ones

Co-parenting is not always easy. It’s not always fun. It’s always confusing and stressful. Hey! It’s parenting! Unless you’re one of the lucky ones.

It Hasn’t Always Been This Good

There were years where it was a struggle on both ends. Being the step-mom I had to learn my boundaries. I had to learn about my son and how he works. Some of it came with ease, but a lot of it came with tears. It was a learning process on all parts.

Over the years his mom and I have become closer. We text regularly. They are an extended part of our family. We celebrate each other’s accomplishments and are there for each other if needed. She has driven my son down from North Louisiana for both of my girls’ births so he would be one of the first ones to see his sisters. We have made the drive to be with them as we cheer on our son during football games. The word LUCKY doesn’t do justice to what we have developed over these last 11 years.

Our son is now 14. He only remembers his dad and me together and his mom and stepdad together. He knows how much I love him and how much he means to me. His mom knows how much I love him. He knows he is MY SON in all aspects, except blood. He knows he gets the same treatment (tough or loving) as my girls. But, he is literally the best son I could have ever asked for.

Visits Are Always Special

We have my son every other week. Although, as he’s gotten older he just comes home when he can due to sports, friends, and life. My husband and I still get hugs and kisses (I’m hoping to get the love for a few more years).

No doubt when he comes home he has one or both girls snuggled in his bed with him at least one of the nights. He is patient, loving, and silly with the girls. We don’t ever do it on purpose, but when he comes home we always tend to make it a little more special than other weekends. He usually doesn’t have to do much to get his favorite dinner, Nunu’s chicken burgers, or my mother in law’s gumbo.

His Biggest Fans

Recently we made the drive to Jackson, MS to watch his school play in the state championship. We knew he may not see field time (he’s in Junior High dressing out for the varsity team), but we wouldn’t miss the opportunity. We watched the game next to his mom, her parents, her in-laws, her brother, and her aunt. Never once did we feel awkward. Never once did we get questioned as to why we were there. We were welcomed by each of them with big hugs and excitement that we were able to support our son together. I’m pretty sure he had the biggest fan section of the entire stadium!

My girls don’t get to see him in his football gear often, but they could have jumped the fence to hug him as soon as they saw him on the field. His mom had made the girls each shirts with his name and number on them and they were so proud to wear them.

After the game, we all met up with our son and his stepdad (who is amazing and coaches the team!). The excitement on his face said it all. I think he was both excited that we had made the drive to watch and that he had all of his parents there to cheer him on.

It’s A Real Thing

I know this may be one of the few and far between stories of families of divorce who actually get along. But, I wanted people to know it happens! It takes a lot. It takes pushing the issues from the past aside. It takes realizing that no matter what, you all love the kid that brought you together no matter what. We are all family at this point. His brother and sister have grown up knowing about my girls. My girls have always known and understood about his other siblings. His mom put it perfectly after taking the photo of all of the kids after the game… they are the fab 5! I couldn’t be happier that I get to do life with him and his family.

Patrice LaBauve
Patrice is a Baton Rouge native that moved to the area to attend UL Lafayette in 2002 and never looked back. Since graduating with a degree in Public Relations she has worked in the insurance business on both personal and commercial sides. Her love of her Cajun heritage made it an easy decision to marry her New Iberia born and raised husband, Matt. They now resides in Youngsville and have two daughters Jolie (9) and Amelie (5) and her bonus son, Eli (14). On most weekdays you will find her running the roads to the dance studio, soccer field or her favorite place, 220 Fitness. The weekends are her favorite family time and are usually spent cooking with her family, watching her daughter show off her goalie skills, checking out any festival around the area, and catching all Saints and Cajuns game. She and her husband are craft beer drinkers, but she also won’t turn down a good Pinot Noir or fancy cocktail. She loves a good philanthropic event, to-do lists, singing in front of people whenever she gets the chance, her gym family and live music. Lafayette has been the perfect place to raise her children and immerse them in the culture she loves.


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