Life’s Unplanned Bonus

I have learned a few things in life about life. I’ve learned that Life isn’t perfect! Another thing I’ve learned about life is that it doesn’t always go as planned. My wife and I planned to have 3 or 4 kids. Once we started trying to have a family, we went through many struggles just to have one. When our daughter came along we were thrilled and felt blessed. Marissa brought us so much joy and is a great kid. We felt she deserved a sibling or two, but as I said life doesn’t always go as planned. After Marissa, we tried and tried for another child, but it just never happened. We had to accept the fact that we would have just one daughter, or so we thought!

As it turns out we have several daughters. They live around town and call us Mom and Dad. These girls even affectionately call me Mac Daddy! They are Marissa’s long time friends and we are like second parents to them. This is not an unusual situation. Many parents grow to love and have relationships with friends of their children. It’s one of the perks of parenthood. The best part is that our kid’s friends can give us some of the same joy, laughter, heartache and even aggravation that our own kids do. Simply put, our children’s friends are extended family!

My daughter’s friends visit us often. Sometimes it doesn’t feel often enough. We have taken each of them on trips and have great memories of bike rides, walking on the beach and dining out. Many times on these trips we seem to laugh until we cry.

These “Bonus Daughters” make our life better and make us better parents. They ask us for advice as we watch them go through some of life’s trials and tribulations. They count on our wisdom and guidance and because they do, we know how much they care for us and respect us. Just as we do with our own daughter, my wife and I try to instill our core values into them. Just like with our daughter some times they listen and sometimes they don’t.

My Bonus Daughters, all have diverse and special personalities. They are smart, funny, polite and caring.

They have baked Christmas cookies with my wife and attended sporting events and concerts with both of us. During my recent cardiac arrest, they were there to visit and they offered both prayers and words of encouragement. I mentioned earlier they bring us joy and laughter, but they bring us so much more than that.

We planned on having more kids than one and as it turns out we do have more.

My wife and I have extra daughters that have been with us for many years thanks to their friendship with my daughter. Each of them has made us better parents and better people.

I’m glad life doesn’t work out as planned, because I never planned for “Bonus Daughters” but I’m sure thankful that I have them.

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