My Beautiful Blended Family Brought Me Happiness After Tragedy

My Beautiful Blended Family Brought Me Happiness After Tragedy

A young mom and widow navigates life after remarriage and more children.

By: Greta Funk

I was mom to a toddler and seven weeks pregnant with my second child when my first husband was killed by a drunk driver. The grief that came along with that devastating loss was only compounded by the hormonal changes of early pregnancy, and I honestly don’t remember a lot about those months before my daughter was born, other than the tremendous support my son and I got from my parents.

Two years later, I was reluctant to start dating again, and even at 28, I was sure I’d be a single mom for the rest of my life. But I met my second husband, fell in love, and got married. It seems fast when I talk about it, but from the day he met my children (at the time, they were 3 and 1), he treated them like his own, and I could see that we’d be a family.

While my second husband and I were dating, my family went to a local amusement park, and he (my then-boyfriend) went along. Not only did he meet my entire family (brothers, sisters-in-law, nieces, and nephews), he stepped into the “daddy” role with my two small children. He went on rides, took them to character shows, and pushed the stroller around the huge park. It was a big deal for both of us, and he passed the “test” with flying colors. From then on, he was devoted to those little kids. It didn’t take long before we got married and added another daughter to the bunch, and then another son.

All four of my kids came into the family one right after another, and by the time they were old enough to talk, they only knew each other as brothers and sisters. My kids know, obviously, that two of them have different last names, and we talk about my first husband regularly. My oldest was too young at the time of the accident to remember anything about our life before it, and my daughter never met her dad, so when I talk about him, I’m sharing my memories in hopes of keeping them alive. We talk about the fact that my oldest daughter shares a birthday with her dad, and we tell the story about how we dressed my oldest son as a bat one Halloween and his dad took him around the neighborhood to trick or treat, despite how he wailed and screamed.


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I know that it’s bittersweet for my first husband’s family to see his children growing up calling another man “Daddy” and to watch them hit milestone after milestone without him here to see it. But my kids have FOUR sets of grandparents (my parents, my first husband’s parents and step-parents, and my second husband’s parents), and they love all my kids as if they shared the same blood. Honestly, sometimes I forget that they don’t, the way they all interact with each other.

My kids are alike in so many ways, but each has a unique personality and perspective on life. It’s so much fun to watch them grow and interact, and despite the tragedy my family suffered, I’m thankful for the four of them and this beautiful blended family of ours every single day.

Greta Funk is a part-time work-at-home wife and mom of four kids, living in the Kansas countryside.

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