Are you ready to read another inspiring story about the love of a stepmother? Then meet Kaycee. She articulates the highs and lows of loving a man with a child and speaks to the complexities and insecurities that come with it. You can feel her heart for her family as you read her words. May you be encouraged by the relationship she now has with her stepson and his mother. Read on….

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I began dating Jeff in June of 2009. When he told me he had a 3 year old son from a previous relationship, I didn’t really give it a second thought.  I had plenty of experience with kids from teaching preschool and being a private nanny.  I guess you could say I have a love and passion for children, which really helped me create a good relationship from the start with Jaxson.

We quickly connected and became good friends.  I tried to be more of a buddy to Jaxson than a mother figure in the beginning, considering this was my first time dating anyone with a child; I was unsure how to navigate the situation, but I felt like I was doing the best that I could.

I was the first woman Jeff dated since splitting up with Jaxson’s biological mother. I didn’t know too much about his biological mom in the beginning of our relationship, I just knew her and Jeff had a nasty break up a little over a year before he and I met.  There were always insecurities in my mind when it came to her; she was Jaxson’s REAL mother.  She and Jeff had a history together, that in itself was a tad bit intimidating, but throw a child into the mix, and WOW.  I struggled with my place A LOT.  Especially when Jeff didn’t feel comfortable allowing me to go to hockey practices when she would be there or go with him to do the Sunday evening drop off’s at the end of “dad’s weekend”.

It was hard trying to figure out what I was even doing trying to make an effort to be a friend or role model to this little guy, when I couldn’t even be present when his mom was around.  I felt like I was being kept secret or something.  The first year of our relationship was NOT an easy one. There was a brief break up for about a month about 5 months into it, but it made our relationship a million times stronger.  I will never forget seeing Jaxson again for the first time after our break up was over.  I was getting out of the car and he just ran as fast as he could to me and yelled “KAYCEE!!!” and gave me the tightest hug.  It was in that moment that I knew I had made an impact in Jaxson’s life.  I can’t even describe how good that hug made me feel….

Fast forward 10 months, and the custody battle began.  Over those 10 months, I discovered a lot about Jaxson’s mom.   Let’s just say she was kind of a lost soul for a while and that had an impact on Jaxson.  Jeff decided to take her to court to try and get joint custody.  I remember getting some paperwork from Jeff’s lawyer in the mail, stating that Jaxson’s mom was trying to modify their arrangement and let Jeff have him every other weekend ONLY. We had the joy of having him 2 nights a week AND every other weekend per the terms of their custody arrangement at that time.  Thinking about only seeing Jaxson 4 days a month broke my heart.  How could she think that only allowing Jaxson to see his dad 4 days a month would somehow be beneficial to him?  (Jaxson is a total daddy’s boy by the way…) Thankfully, we ended up settling out of court and now we have Jaxson every other week!  I will be forever grateful to his mom for realizing what was best for him and agreeing to joint custody.

Standing by Jeff’s side during that whole ordeal, the arguments, the court depositions, etc. was just one of many bumps I know we will have to face in our lives together, but the bumps are what strengthen you in life.

After the custody issue was resolved, things quieted down and everything was smooth sailing.  Jaxson’s mom and I were on better terms, which helped things tremendously.  I coached Jaxson’s first soccer team, which was such a fun experience.  Soccer was my favorite sport growing up; I played until I was in high school, so it was really awesome sharing my love of the sport with him by being his coach the first season he played.  Jaxson also started kindergarten shortly after that.  I am very involved in his school work, his teachers know me well, we all go to parent teacher conferences together, I am the one that gets him up and ready each morning during our weeks with him. It’s nice to have more involvement in his life now that he gets to spend more time with his dad and I.

This past December, Jeff and I had our own child together, another son, we named him James (Jimmy for short).  I was worried about how Jaxson would react to having to share his dad with his little brother, but silly me for worrying in the first place.  Jaxson has embraced the big brother role so well.  He’s such a huge help and loves making Jimmy laugh.  I couldn’t have picked a better big brother for my own first child.  Seeing them interact and bond is by far one of the most rewarding things in my life.

Bottom line, being in a relationship with a man that has a child is no easy task.  I never would have dreamed before Jeff that I would be a stepmom to another man’s child.  It has been a blessing in disguise that these two came into my life. There have been a lot of highs and lows in the past 3 years we have been together, but the biggest high of them all will be our wedding taking place this June on the beach!  I will officially have the stepmom title in less than 8 weeks, even though I’ve been playing the role for 3 years now.

I am head over heels in love with my future husband, I cannot wait to be his wife and continue growing together in our relationship and in our family. I use my love for Jeff to be the best step mom I can be to Jaxson.  Jaxson is a part of his father, and when I made the decision to be with Jeff, that meant accepting and loving everything about him, Jaxson included.  Jaxson may not be “mine”, but I will always love and care for him like he is. Our family situation hasn’t always been easy, but to me, it will always be worth it.

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Kaycee and Jeff have been together since June 2009.  They were engaged last summer and will be tying the knot in a beach wedding this June. Jeff has a son, Jaxson (Kaycee’s step son) who is 6 years old, getting ready to finish up his kindergarten year in school.  They also recently had a son of their own in December of 2011, named James (aka Jimmy).   Jaxson is involved in Hockey, T-ball, soccer and dirt bike riding.  We enjoy bike riding as a family, going to the park, anything outdoors really. Kaycee and her family live in Indianapolis, IN. You can connect with Kaycee on Twitter.

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