In the past I have alluded to a complex family situation that I couldn’t really talk about but that weighed in heavily on our ability to make future decisions, especially regarding where we will live. Well readers, now you can probably deduce. I still feel I should keep things on the downlow, but recently there has been enough of a shift that I can at least include the whole picture. After a year and a half of negotiations, Fern’s brother, Leonithas, now gets to come over to our house and have several weekly visits. We have been waiting for this moment, expecting it to usher in a brand new sparkling world. We didn’t take into account that the brand new sparkling world would contain so much uncharted territory as to be utterly overwhelming.
For two parents stretched thin by lack of sleep, finances, toddler antics and tight schedules, we are struggling to find the time to really process what it takes to begin to blend a family. How can we most consciously, and most lovingly, foster the beginning of a solid sibling relationship…one that is not magically starting of its own accord? What is my role in this child’s life? How do I find the time to integrate the care of another being? How do I step back and allow bonding to slowly unfold, without feeling like I have picked up a nanny job? How can we make sure that in our attempts to welcome her brother, that we don’t leave out his sister? And there just aren’t enough words to describe the friction this has created in my relationship with my partner.
As ever, I hold hope. As ever, I keep the understanding that the universe cannot be micromanaged, that often all we can do is set a course and hoist our sails. As ever, I know that seemingly impossible things can happen in the blink of an eye.
That said, I would love any feedback, advice, helpful commentary from other parents/families that have dealt with blending families and/or nurturing healthy sibling relationships. Also, donations of brownies, sparkly things and bottles of wine might help too.
It’s spring! What else to do but make room for more life?