Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Relationship Building

Therapists offices are full of people who want to and need to dissect, process and examine their former and present relationships with their parents and their siblings. People need to talk through these relationships and figure out how they 'fit' in a family's identity and how that 'place' shapes them into the person they are today.

It is scary to think about how some of the little decisions as well as some of the big ones will impact our kids. I joke sometimes that we should start a therapy fund now.

More recently, I have begun to ponder siblings and their relationships. (For obvious reasons). My brother, John and I are quite close. On the surface, in high school, we really didn't have much in common. He was (and is) a jock. I played field hockey and ran track but I wasn't a super star. He was. He had lots of fun friends and dated like crazy. Me? I hung out with the nerds and embraced my nerd-dom. He is outgoing and hysterical. I am funny but I prefer and preferred to be low profile.

But we seriously loved each other growing up. As little kids, we seldom fought. I do remember one "serious" fight when he was his karate phase. He kicked me but then I just held his leg and he had to hop around on one foot. I made him so mad by pulling his sock off and then dropping his leg.

There must have been other moments but seriously, that is the only thing I can remember! We just did our own thing. And respected each other and all of our differences all the way through. (For the most part.) I even remember one time, in high school, I literally fell asleep on my books and John took my book away, tucked me in, and turned off the light. There are many more memories like that.

John and I are about 2 years and 5 months apart while Wyeth and Seren are 2 years 7 months apart. I am the female firstborn as is Seren. I find family dynamics to be fascinating and amazing.

I'd love for Seren and Wyeth to be as close as John and I growing up and as adults. What of this can I 'control' by encouraging respecting, loving behavior between siblings? What of this is completely based in chemistry and personalities? Like most of parenting- the truth is somewhere in between. Here is to hoping that Seren and Wyeth enjoy each other as much as I enjoy my 'baby' brother!

Here are some pics of us. Aren't we cute? These are a few years old but are some good ones of us.


LauraC said...

Unfortunately I think a lot of it is nature! My sister and I were polar opposites and NEVER got along as kids. But somehow still best friends at the same time as hating each other? Anyway we never kept in touch when I left for college and she left for boot camp. And then she grew up and had a kid and suddenly we are best friends. BUT if we lived in the same town, we would not get along. It works a lot better long-distance!

John said...

I remember being vey young when we decided to remain close no matter what. We have seen what happens to families when siblings loose touch and are no longer friends, for what ever reason. I believe we committed to loving each other, despite our differences, we found our similarities. I believe that having an older sister shaped me into the man i am, as i hope having a little sister shaped you into the woman you are.

Julie said...

I really really love this post! As an only child, I often wonder how to parent two children and I hear more stories about siblings who hate each other or are so competitive toward one another that they can't find that common ground. I think its super awesome you are so close with your brother and that you have such loving memories as children. I hope my girls are half as lucky.

Jessica said...

Very nice! I'm close with my siblings as well (one brother, one sister), and I am already thinking about how to foster that even before our second is actually here!