"I am not the guardian." I am “just the step mom.” Man alive I have been aggravated this week. First I try to call the school to get a password for Cade’s online learning center. Nope. I’m not a guardian. I’m not even in his records. Nice. Then I try to call the child support office to set up automatic payment and they can’t even confirm whether or not the paperwork has been sent. Are you kidding me?? I understand that some information is important to keep secure. I understand that in some instances you can’t just give out critical information to strangers. But that’s when I call the school randomly, with a creepy man voice asking for a kids social security number or call some government agency asking for bank account information with no verification. Hello, I’m trying to do the right thing here! I’m trying to make sure this kid in my life is doing well in school in case we need to contact his teachers to see if anything needs to be done to help him. I’m trying to help out my husband by doing some legwork he isn’t able to do on his job. I’m trying to make sure the money we owe this child gets there so that he can be properly fed and clothed. I AM NOT “JUST” A STEP MOM! When I married Jeff we became a family of three. I will always be in Cade’s life and he will always be in mine. I will talk to him on the phone, ask how his day was, give him medicine if he’s sick, comfort him when he’s scared or sad, be sure he has healthy things to eat at our house, help him pack and clean his room (at times), drive him around, wash his clothes, keep gifts in mind that make me think of him. I will hurt when he hurts. I will rejoice when he succeeds. I will cringe when he makes mistakes. I will wonder what he does with his friends, hope he has fun on weekends, hope he finds subjects in school he likes and excels at. I will look forward to him getting home to us and I will cry when he leaves. I will not consider it a holiday if he’s not here. I will be at his graduation. I will be at his wedding. I will babysit his kids. If he wants, I will listen and give advise. If he wants, I will play and hang out. I will get annoyed if he doesn’t listen, roll my eyes if he tracks dirt in the house or doesn't smile for pictures, tease him when he complains about chores, get frustrated when things don’t go as planned. I will worry about his life that we don’t get to see, wonder about his thoughts and worries, be concerned about his emotional well-being. I will be overbearing, annoying, prying, irrational, illogical. I will be proud, encouraging, supportive, gracious, respectful, helpful. I will laugh at his jokes, talk to him about yucky girl love stuff, tell him about "when I was his age." I will tell him he plays too many video games. I will try as hard as I can to be a good influence in his life. I will feel defeated by my mistakes! I will be a bad parent. AND I will be a good parent. But believe me-I will not be JUST a step mom. I will be MORE THAN a guardian. Cade has a mom, yes. BUT, he ALSO has me. So don’t MESS with me!