BY BROOKE REESE
My parents were married in August of 1994. I was born in June of 1995. They were divorced by the end of 1996.
Two years. That’s all it took to start a family and end it.
I grew up traveling back and forth between homes. Spending the weekdays with my mom and most weekends with my dad.
After my dad moved across the bridge it became more of a struggle to travel three hours to see him, especially as I started to grow up.
But I never knew any different. I don’t ever remember my parents in the same household.
I don’t have childhood memories of my parents and I going out to eat or hanging out in the living room on a lazy Sunday morning.
My memories are of my parents talking in the parking lots of half-way meeting places and over the phone.
I’m not sure if it was hard growing up that way because I didn’t know it any other way.
I loved having individual time with my parents, that’s for sure.
My mom and I got so incredibly close that way. My dad and I did as well, I always got so excited for the adventures we would go on together.
Going to my dad’s house always meant fun. I always loved being able to stay up late while watching movies and eating ice cream with him.
That was so important to me because it was so intimate. We were so close.
My mom and I were as well, because we were girls so we could always sneak off by ourselves and go shopping or to see a chick flick.
I don’t remember my parents together, but I always remember my single dad and my remarried mom. My stepdad came into the picture by age 3 and by 4 the two were married and had my little brother.
I don’t remember life without my mom and stepdad together. That’s just how I thought families were.
It wasn’t until I started going to school that I realized other people’s moms and dads lived together.
I don’t think the separation really affected me because of this. Which I thank my parents for, is deciding to get divorced before I would remember it.
I feel like if my parents would have stayed together for a few more years to try to work it out, first it wouldn’t have worked and second I would have resented them for pulling my family apart.
Because they got divorced so quickly after I was born I couldn’t know another family dynamic.
Do I wish my parents would have worked out and stayed together? Sure.
But the older I got the more I understood why they weren’t good together. And that made it easier to process for me because of the lack of memories I have.
My heart truly goes out to people that do remember their happy parents before their split because I can’t imagine the sadness that must come along with the memories.
I don’t think raising me separately was ever a big deal for my parents. I never really asked questions as a kid because I was kind of oblivious to the unusual situation I was in.
As unique of a family dynamic as I did have, I wouldn’t have wanted it any other way. I loved my childhood because of the individual attention I got and never questioning the fact that my parents loved me.