Yesterday, I received an email from Facebook. I opened it to a great surprise! Halle had listed me as her Mother on Facebook and they needed me to confirm the request. I immediately confirmed! I have to tell you that I did not see that one coming and that's probably what makes it so much sweeter. She has always listed Bitty as her mother and that's still the case, but she has now added me and her mother-in-law, three mothers. It's not lost on me how far we have come.
As I've mentioned, I have left it up to the kids to direct the relationship I have with them. Halle was nineteen when I married Raylan, married herself and a new Mom to new baby Haley. Yes, I'm a Grandma at 44. Back then Halle was close to both Bitty and Greta. There had been a long "competition" if you will for Halle during Greta's marriage to Raylan. Even following the separation, they both were actively involved with Halle.
Two months before we moved in together, Raylan had neck surgery. That event started my relationship with Halle off on the wrong foot. Greta insisted on coming to the operation along with Halle and me. It was a nightmare for me. Greta and Halle spent the entire time before the surgery talking with Raylan about all the "good old times." As you guessed it I was not apart of any of the discussion. It was as if I didn't exist. It was beyond rough.
During and after the surgery, Greta became increasingly angry that I was there. Halle was Greta's confidant and ally. So when Greta froze me out, ignored my existence, Halle felt torn. When Greta was around, I didn't exist. When Greta wasn't around Halle was warm and friendly but there was a distance. I knew that it was placing a lot of stress on Halle to have a relationship of note with me, so I left it alone. Whether I should have fought for one or not, I can't say. At the time I was so overwhelmed with what I had on my plate in blending our family that it probably was more of an excuse to relieve the pressure I felt to succeed. Over the years, Halle has stayed close to Bitty and her relationship with Greta has fallen away.
When Little Hart was in the hospital, we all came together. I remember Halle calling Little Hart's room and she started talking. There had been a lot of confusion when people called, Greta and I actually share the same first name. I interrupted her and said I think you want Greta. Halle said "Lisa it's me Halle I called for you - MY Step-Mom" I stumbled over myself with apologies. I felt awful! Vowed to change things.
Since that time, I have worked at building my own relationship with Halle. I have invited her to lunch with just me, sometimes the girls and my Mom on occasion. Before and after every lunch she sends me the sweetest, most heartfelt messages about how much she is looking forward to spending time with me or how much fun she had. I don't know if she would have been as receptive years ago or if Little Hart's illness broke a wall down.
What I do know is that I am glad to have a chance to know an amazing young woman. As silly and probably inconsequential as listing your Mom on Facebook may seem to some, it was an amazing, meaningful day to me. I only hope to continue growing our relationship. She is 30 and I am 44, but it's never to late to start! I'm just so glad that neither of us closed the door completely!