Bere and I have had some pretty in depth conversations about blended family life. We are one in the same when it comes down to putting our kids before ourselves; to move past any hurt feelings, holding onto any bitterness or treating our children as property as though we have a right to them more then their fathers. They are just as much part of their children as we the mothers are. A father is essential, and we value them as our own family irregardless of how it didn't work out between us. That's not the kids' fault. So we move forward with what we have and make it the absolute best. Our children will know that they are loved and that we value their daddies: their wives, and their step siblings. They're now family. I cannot wait to share The Boyer + Steve family story. May it inspire blended families everywhere as we sort out how to do life.
"My Accidental, Purposeful Story"
by Bere Boyer
"This wasn’t supposed to happen… At the age of 14 I was diagnosed with severe Endometriosis. I never imagined that would be the beginning of what to some people could be a very physically and emotionally painful journey. I went from one hormone treatment to the next and even multiple laparoscopies until finally a hysterectomy was recommended. This for me wasn’t an option because regardless of the multiple doctors who told me I couldn’t have a successful pregnancy there was something within me that refused to accept that. I couldn’t let a couple of tests dictated what my future would look like. After my last laparoscopy I decided I was done! Done with the meds, done with the surgeries just done! I would let my body do what I knew in my heart my body was capable of doing. I wish I could say that suddenly, I became pregnant and lived happily ever after but unfortunately life isn’t always that simple. As to how I ended up with the three most amazing children in the world? Let’s just say God needs not to explain his miracles.
Davonn came into my live when he was about a month and a half. This sweet little boy instantly stole my heart and has taught me what it feels like to love unconditionally. Him coming into my live has helped me realized the things I am capable of doing for those I love and has changed my life in more ways that you have time to read about. He was truly My First Love! Raising him has come with many up and downs for his health has not always been the best and till this day we have our struggles but not a thing about his health has ever dictated the size of his heart. He is kind, loving and smart in such a way I truly feel many adults don’t have the capacity to understand. His outside-the-box way of viewing live is so amazing it challenges me to grow daily.
Then there is Gigi. She was my first ‘Rainbow Baby’. Yes, I, that girl that couldn’t have kids had a beautiful healthy baby girl. My pregnancy and delivery were very high risk and I almost lost my baby girl in multiple occasions but it was worth every tear and every scare the moment I heard my baby cry for the first time. She was alive. I delivered a beautiful, healthy breathing baby! At that moment as I looked into her eyes I could see the beauty of life and the grace of God upon my life and so I named my baby girl Gianna (God is gracious) Zoe (Life). She has turned out to be the most caring, smart and compassionate person I’ve ever met in my life. We are, as we call ourselves, each other’s snuggle buddies and her arms are my happy place. Now what are you willing to do for a walking, breathing miracle who brought hope back into your life? Everything!
Steve is Gianna’s father, and we had a beautiful relationship for many years. Our relationship was based on love trust and respect as should every relationship. We loved each other so much to be wise enough to realize we were no longer walking the same path. Our relationship was never hurtful, abusive or dysfunctional in any way, we just wanted different things out of the beautiful puzzle of life. Due to our differences we decided to separate and shortly after my amazing husband Joe entered our lives. Notice how I say OUR lives, Steve & I’s lives. From the very beginning I made it very clear to Joe that Steve, as the father of my baby, held a very special part of my heart and always would. Whether we were together or not we would always be family and he was welcomed to become part of our family. I also made it very clear to Steve that I was in love with Joe and we would form a new family that he was more than welcomed to be a part of as well. Being the only guy in my live was never an option on the table for they each played very different roles and were essential to my happiness and the happiness of my children.
Joe and I met in the most serendipitous of ways. We were both in places we weren’t supposed to be at the most perfect of times. I was supporting a friend very dear to my heart on her special day and he was helping a friend of his. Never would either of us have thought that day we thought we were being there for others would do more for our lives than we did for theirs. I’ve never had an issue describing people but I always struggle to put into words what my husband means to me. Here goes nothing… my husband… is … my happily ever after! Cheesy much?! This man is so much more than anything I’ve ever dreamed of, anything I’ve ever seen or anything I’ve ever deserved. With him I feel safe, loved protected, respected, valued, heard and appreciated. Not only did he earned my love but he managed to earn the love of my babies and that alone means everything to me. We have been married for two years now and they have been the happiest two years of my live.
Then came the day when I gave birth to my second little princess. Yes! I gave birth to yet another beautiful, healthy breathing baby girl. I remember being pregnant with Vivi and feeling like I pretty much had this mothering thing in the bag. I mean after all I had an adoptive son and a daughter I gave birth to. Two different genders and two very different experiences, what more could I possibly need to learn?!? Boy was I wrong! This little girl has challenged me in so many ways! She brings tons of laughter to the Boyer household. Vivi not only looks like her daddy but she is as goofy as he is. Nothing can dim her light and she is determined to shine. At just three years old she is smart, feisty, loving and as outspoken as they come. If she is thinking it you’ll know it and she’s not apologizing for having her own feelings. I never thought I would have to learn to deal with a three-year-old version of myself but I must admit I’m loving every challenging, exciting minute of it.
As I mentioned before it wasn’t all perfect. My desire to give birth left me grieving the loss of three babies which made Gianna & Vimarys babies number 4 and 5. Having gone through that was hard and has a way of scaring a piece of our hearts but I must say I still feel as blessed as can be. Its not everyday that you find a husband so loving and compassionate that he comes to you and tells you, “When Steve comes from Puerto Rico to visit Gigi he should stay at our home. After all, how else would he get to experience morning snuggles, lunches together and bedtime prayers with his little girl in her everyday life?” and it’s not every day that you ex comes to you and tells you, “I love your husband because he respects me and loves my baby girl like only I could love her!”
As much as I would like to take full credit for the way my ex and my husband interact, this is 100% on them. The one role they share is the role of Daddy or Papi and I can’t think of better men to share that title. When Gigi comes to me and tells me with tears in her eyes that she wishes everyone had two daddies like her so they will always have a dad to love them I am reminded of why we CHOOSE to do things this way. In my babies’ eyes, a healthy marriage, an adoptive brother and separated parents who love each other and pour into each other’s new beginnings is as normal as cheese on pizza.
So just because it wasn’t supposed to happen doesn’t mean it wasn’t meant to be!"
Are you crying yet?!?!?! What an incredible story, I was beyond thrilled to take her family pictures. Here's a beautiful slideshow of some of my favorites <3 please be sure to click HD, if your photos are still fuzzy you clicked HD too soon, try again!