A FATHER’S DAY TRIBUTE – The Corporon Family Story!

By on June 18, 2010

A FATHER’S DAY TRIBUTE – A True Story

Here Comes the Judge (and she was “petite” too!)

“Please rise – Superior Court of the State of California, Honorable Judge Leonard presiding over the case of, Toro vs. Toro, in the matter of “Move-Away.”

Hearing the clamor of the rickety court benches as everyone stood up, and the swiftness of the people’s feet on the ground, as they quickly stood to welcome the judge back for her ruling, made me instantly excited, worried, scared…hopeful!

Never did I think so many emotions could hit a person all at once.

No Petite Feat, Dealing with Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap!

For a moment, on that fateful day in ’98, through the muddled, murmuring voices of the courtroom, I thought back over the past two years of this war…through my divorce in ‘97, through the ugly custody case and move a way battle that I was currently in, through the accusations, assumptions and ignorance others had about meeting someone “online,” equaling instant doom and considered a “dirty” thing; through the discriminatory treatment we got because of the untraditional nature of our relationship, through the fact that two years were stolen from our lives due to fabrication, hate and biasness, through the fear that this man didn’t HAVE to go thru all this scrutiny and could easily find another life mate (one who doesn’t have all this baggage)…I found the one memory that I needed to get through this day – the memory of the feeling I had on the day I met Randy Corporon.

Caught in a “petite” Moment

Everything we had gone through, all the sacrifices we’ve made, living 1000-miles apart for two years, combining two households on a budget of a “newly employed-mom” and first year “law school student,” all the fortitude it took to keep things going, the emotional roller-coaster we were constantly on, all the tears that were shed each time a skirmish was lost, as well as the tears shed each time we won, all the fear I had that I might lose my children, or the man I knew was my soul-mate… all our wants and desires now rested in the hands of one person, on this day.

The Ruling – with Ducky-Bumps!

The sudden noise of silence throughout the courtroom resounded through me like an echoing scream; bringing me out of my deep thoughts and sending ducky-bumps up and down my arms. I stood and watched the judge sit down behind her dark wood, raised, bench…never glancing up at us, not even for a moment. This was it – the day I’ve waited for, for two years! “Be seated,” she said with such authority. I leanedforward and strained to look at her face to notice any glimpse of an answer regarding my future – there wasn’t any. Only a solemnexpression very telling that “someone” will go home unhappy today.

The judge began speaking. Her words came out to me as a foreign language, with “therein, herein and thereinafter,” causing me to whisper “huh?” to my attorney. I couldn’t discern her proclamation…until finally…I heard her say, with clarity: “The Court finds that it would be detrimental to the minors should they be removed from the mother’s primary care; the Court grants Petitioner/Mother’s request to move with the minors to the state of Colorado…Court dismissed.” I, again, had a thousand emotions hit me all at once…but this time, I was able to exhale and know that, finally, the start of our family life together was imminent.

Blended-Family Statistics

It was a long, arduous battle, but one I knew was the right decision for both me, and my children (the past 14 years is proof positive of that!). This brings me to, “why,” I am writing this Father’s Day tribute to my husband. It’s not often we hear of accolades to the silent “hero’s” of our children – their “step-parent!” And why is this? Shouldn’t it be plentiful since “Blended families” are now considered the most common form of a “family unit” in America, with 2,100 blended families forming each day? Over 65% of Americans are directly touched by a “step-family” scenario. I think it’s time we celebrated these “silent hero’s” who have stepped up, and who have stepped into the role of the absentee parent (or, not as involved parent) to protect, to provide for, and to help raise our children!

Although Bruce Willis wasn’t/isn’t an absentee father, Ashton Kutcher, who we all know married Willis’s “die-hard” petite-beauty, ex-wife, Demi Moore (standing at a mere 5’4”), is a wonderful step-dad to Moore’s & Willis’s kids (who look like they will be following in their mother’s footsteps as “petites”). All three adults have marveled about how they are all just “one big happy family.” Willis is even quoted in saying, “I’m still suspiciously in awe of how well the blended family seems to function!”

Another great example of the “un-normal” Hollywood blended family is the lovely, petite, Diane Lane and hunk-a-hunk-a-man, Josh Brolin – he’s quoted saying, “We all get along with each other; all the kids and our exes. It’s a modern day marriage.” If only that was the case for mine *sighs.*

Being “Wrong,” can be so “Right!”

When my ex and I separated and I knew divorce was impending, my biggest question and fear was, “How could I ever trust someone around my kids (if I were to date or get involved with someone again)?” My second question and fear was thinking, “Nobody will ever want me…or want to take on a ready-made family, and the baggage that comes with divorce.” Well, thank God for being “wrong!”

The story of “how” I met Randy is very interesting and unique (well, probably not by today’s standards, but definitely extreme for back then). People have told me that it sounds like an action-packed-comedy-love-story, and that I should write a book about it “all.” Perhaps I will. But for now, I will pick up at the point of when Randy first met my children. We had been dating for 3 months before we decided to introduce them, to him – the anticipation for me was so overwhelming! Although, at the time, Randy had been a children’s advocate for 12 years, and I knew he volunteered at a home for neglected and abused children (clearly, being very capable of interacting with kids), I was very nervous not knowing what kind or reaction to expect from my 5 year old daughter (my son was only 1 ½ years old, so I knew that would go fine).

Holding my Breath and Crossing my Fingers – The Introduction

I couldn’t believe my eyes! When Randy told me that, for some reason, kids and pets were like magnets to him, he wasn’t kidding! Almost instantly, my cat was on his lap, my daughter was putting barrettes all in his hair (and painted his nails later on) and my son curled up next to him, on what space was left, to drink his bottle. I remember standing back and seeing how this man interacted with my children, I took it all in, and knew this was the man I was going to marry!

Promises of a “Father”

May 27th, 2000, Randy and I got married, and on that day, he not only made vows to me, but looked each of my precious babies in their eyes and made vows to them; vowing to always “be there” for them, no matter what…“to protect them, comfort them and teach them, for as long as they live.” He then solidified his promises by presenting to my daughter, a little green emerald ring, and to my son, a “blending of families” medallion necklace. Believe me, there wasn’t a dry-eye in the house! It touched my heart so deeply.

14 years later (our daughter now, 19, and our son, 15), Randy Corporon has kept all of his promises, and then some, and continues to do what he’s always done – “Be there for them!”

He has been the one to teach them all the little things that kids need to learn growing up, like, how to tie their shoes, how to swim, how to ride their bikes…all with patience and diligence; he’s been to every major doctor appointment, every talent show, every art show, every teacher conference and most field trips…no matter how busy his schedule may have been (he’s a private-practicing attorney, so one can imagine the demands).

He’s been there through every heartbreak, every toothache, and every fever… sitting at the emergency room, sometimes for hours – never complaining, always supporting. He’s been there for every school dance, every “new dress,” and every new adventure that came their way…always eagerly providing them with opportunities, love, and support…unconditionally!

Blended-Families = “FAMILY!”

It does not take blood to make a family, and as I always say, “Proof is in the pudding!” Nobody ever believes we are a “blended” family because they see the amazing bond Randy has with Alex and Noah. The children have never referred to Randy as their “step-dad,” nor has Randy referred to them as his “step-children” (except when legalities call for it). We are simply “family,” in all sense of the word – Dad, Mom, Daughter and Son! I celebrate all the blended-families out there, and give heartfelt thanks, full of love and gratitude to my husband, Randy! What more could a woman ever want in a “father” for her kids?!” Absolutely NOTHING! Happy Father’s Day!

Written By: Tana Corporon

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16 Comments

  1. Regina Burke

    June 19, 2010 at 1:43 am

    Tana
    That was wonderful. I too understand what it means to have a man to come into an already made family. I have the upmost respect for any man that will fight to have custudy for their children when a mother is unfit to do so, or that a mother may be absent do to death. We all know as mothers this is indeed a big challenge, for moms alone but, when a man steps up, and takes on this challenge, that person in my eyes is truely what I call A Father. Kudos to all you wonderful FATHERS.

  2. Tana

    June 19, 2010 at 4:29 am

    Regina – thank you so much for taking time out to read my tribute! I truly want to hear more positive stories about "step-family" relationship because so many people I know, and talk to, are in one. I remember how Jon-Boy helped take care of your girls…and I know how much they respected him and loved him. You, though, are a truly amazing mom, so your girls are very lucky! Much love to you my friend.

  3. George Herman

    June 19, 2010 at 2:14 pm

    Tana,
    You wrote it perfectly, word for word, nothing but the truth, the whole truth so help me God! LOL.This is truly a wonderful gift for Randy this Father's Day, not just the Thank You but words from the heart are the most heartfelt. (No wonder he loves you). Not sure how you will top this next year. (wink) It does take a man to stand up and be a father but it takes a special man to be called "Dad" with that Randy take a bow and enjoy your Father's Day! And all the other Great Dad's out there Happy Father's Day.

    • Tana

      June 21, 2010 at 5:07 pm

      Thanks "George!" I know you know this story very well. Thanks for your never-ending, always "there for me" support. I hope you all had a Happy Father's Day as well.

  4. Randy Corporon

    June 19, 2010 at 4:33 pm

    Thank you, My Love. Can you bring me a Kleenex?
    It is the blessing and gift of my life to be the husband and dad of our gang of four.
    Of course, there were no guarantees and an inauspicious start. It is reported by a reliable source that, upon first laying eyes on me, Alex (don't worry, Honey, I forgive you) said: "Mom, tell me that's not him!?"
    Dr. Laura (the anti step-parent advocate), are you reading?
    Thank you, too, Bella Petite and Ms. Lauren, for participating in my early Father's Day surprise.

    • Tana

      June 21, 2010 at 5:10 pm

      No, thank YOU Randy! You were so special yesterday…I'm so glad we got to pour our love out on you and be all together. Thanks for always hanging in there with me, and for me!

      My favorite thing about yesterday is, after we read the kids this tribute to them, they both clapped and had tears in their eyes — that told me even MORE about how they feel.

      Hey, let's send this to "Dr. Laura" and start a HUGE debate with her?? Can I, can I? (I would really like that!!).

  5. Sunshine

    June 20, 2010 at 4:35 am

    Tana, I heard most of this when we had our lil chat:) But it was great to actually read your words and hear some of the details that we didnt talk about . As you know, we have a blended family also as well as a hard to deal with ex. so I can very much relate. The Men who step in and are there are the true Fathers….AWESOME story and happy fairy tale!

    • Tana

      June 24, 2010 at 7:36 pm

      Hi Sunshine – I don't know how I missed your post…but thank you so much for commenting! I'm so glad you and I have "met," and share this common bond.

      Thanks again!

  6. Kathee

    June 20, 2010 at 5:14 pm

    Tana,

    This is the most beautiful "True" story I have ever read. I know where you were back then and where you are today and where you are today is where all of you are meant to be, together as "Family". As you know we have very similar life stories and we both have found our "Soul Mate" , best friend and father to our children the second time around. I felt like I was reading about my own life.

    Can you bring me a Kleenex after you give one to Randy. Got to love what comes out of the mouths of sweet innocent children (Alex).

    I Love You, Your Sis

    Kathee

    • Tana

      June 21, 2010 at 5:16 pm

      Kathee — thank you for your kind words and support. You've always been there for me too, and I love you for that. I'm so glad you've experienced the same kind of love and support, for not only you, but your amazing daughter "Cherish," the second time around. You marrying Greg, then Greg becoming Cherish's father and stepping up as her father, was the mold I followed after. You and I are indeed blessed to have married "MEN" who saw past "blood-lines" and the imaginary lines of the role of a step-parent.

      I love you too!

      PS – and thank you for supporting Bella Petite!

  7. Gael Martin

    June 20, 2010 at 5:19 pm

    Randy as a devoted dad and husband comes as no surprise to me and my family. Randy used to come visit us on his cross country trips and our kids had an immediate connection to Randy. What a lovely story to tell, Tana and you told it so well. Families come in all shapes and sizes. The only thing "traditional" about families is that each is unique and each deserves the opportunity to experience the love and happiness that you and your family have been blessed with. So, here's to "step-families", two-mom families, two-dad famlies, single parent families, families of friends, etc. etc. etc. and Happy Father's Day to everyone who has ever played the role of dad!

    • Tana

      June 21, 2010 at 5:19 pm

      Gael, thank you for your beautiful words and nice comments about Randy — he truly is very special. Your words ring so true about the meaning, nowadays, of a "traditional family"…very well said!

      Hope you had a happy day!

  8. Audrey

    June 20, 2010 at 8:31 pm

    Tana,
    This article is my favorite. Very well written, poignant and heartfelt.
    Happy Father's Day…Randy!

  9. Nan Corporon

    June 21, 2010 at 12:35 pm

    I remember when Randy first told my partner, Doreen, and me about meeting Tara online, and how she was his soulmate. He was hosting us as we traveled cross-country from San Francisco to our new home in Maryland, and I was sure this online thing was another wacky deal my interesting cousin Randy had gotten himself involved in. Then I saw Randy and the kids together at a family reunion–wow! a natural father, and he loves those kids. They're lucky to have Randy as their dad, but Randy is equally lucky to have found Tara and her 2 great kids with whom to share his life.

    • Tana

      June 21, 2010 at 11:22 pm

      Dear Nan – thank you so much for you sweet words! It's always meant a great deal to me to have the support and acceptance from "all" of Randy's family. Thanks for reading!!

      Hope you're having a great day!

  10. Tana

    June 21, 2010 at 5:19 pm

    Audrey – thank you for saying!! Means a lot, and thanks for supporting Bella Petite! Hope you guys had a great Father's Day, as well.

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