Words are just words or are they?

definition of word
noun \ˈwərd\

: a sound or combination of sounds that has a meaning and is spoken or written

: a brief remark or conversation : something that a person says

: an order or command

Overheard as our girls were preparing cards for J’s brother to go along with his gift he is MY BIRTH-BROTHER, not YOURS!  J’s brother was born about 15 months after her and S along with her husband are parenting him.  Our girls have known him from inside S’s tummy and when he was born.  We see him as often as we see S.

My husband and I sat and listened to our girls speak about who has sisters and who has brothers that don’t live with us but are still our family.  We wondered when voices rose should we step in to calm the fighting down?  Or should we just let them figure it out on their own?

They had it right in knowing that A has 3 sisters through her birth father and J has one brother from S and one from her birthfather.  It was interesting to hear them assert who belonged with whom to each other claiming their own brothers or sisters.

It is just words that they were using with the prefix of “birth” to claim their siblings.  What was so great about this discussion they had was how natural it was for them to talk about these siblings that live in other parts of our family like it was nothing out of the ordinary.

The words we have used to explain our family story are something they have taken in and processed themselves.  They know their siblings they know what part of the family they are part of, and to us that is what is important.  It is our girls who add the prefix “birth” when talking about their families when claiming their territory.

So while they fought over the wording and logistics it was comforting to us they understand who their family is, all of them.

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One thought on “Words are just words or are they?

  1. I just came across your blog as part of the Interview Project … I love it! I look forward to following along!

    I find it amazing too how awesome kids (your kids, in this instance) are at making sense of their family ties … you have clearly done an amazing job at normalizing all of this for them and seems to me like your daughters have some pretty great role models!

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