Dear Dr Laura,
I have listened for a long time, but never had a reason to write or call for advice. Listening to you for all these years, you have pretty much answered all my questions. I never have needed validation for my actions. If I am wrong, I will admit it freely and learn from my mistakes. I am never opinionated unless asked.
I am the child of divorce. My mother remarried when I was three and that is the man who raised me. I haven't seen my bio-dad since then when he left my mom for the girlfriend and had three more children. Over the years I have been thankful I wasn't a divided kid: three days here, two days there. I felt like I actually belonged somewhere. My mom had three more children with her new husband and it was as normal a life as could be. I always felt my step-dad was my dad. And would state that fact, which made neighbors, aunts, uncles upset. He was a great man, a funny man and I never felt "different" He struggled with health issues as long as I can remember and we always said, "Dad had nine lives." It was a surprise to all of us he lived as long as he did and he died 2 years ago at the age of 80. I had made peace with the fact that each time I saw him could be my last time and I made each visit count.
I was 7 hours away when I got the call he would pass that night. My daughter had asked me to visit during her pre-natal appointment. I stayed, and did not make it there until the next day. My mom asked me why I had not come, I told her why. She said, "You should have picked your father." Yesterday my sister addressed it. That they were all there and she wouldn't have been anywhere else. I guess people are just different she said, but I should come. I don't need validation I did the right thing. My husband and children are my family. And they will always be first. You helped me see that years ago.