Sister Talk

Sisters are different flowers from the same garden.  ~Author Unknown

School conferences were held yesterday. We had our first of two. We attended the conference with my oldest sons fifth grade teacher who happens to be the same teacher he had last year. He adores her. She adores him. He has done well under her instruction and as such we also adore her.

She raved about how well he is doing, reviewed his CMT scores (very good!), talked about him joining Math Olympiads and suggested we consider a specif Math and Science magnet school for his middle school years. It was a pleasant conversation. Our son sat to his teachers left and his father and I sat across from them.

"So, do you have any questions?" the teacher asked.

I did. I had recently learned that a core piece of the schools curriculum had changed. I/I as we call it (inter/intra personal skills class) was removed. I wanted to understand why as this is one of the core values in a Gardner Multiple Intelligences School. I did not understand how they could remove it from the curriculum and not tell the parents. My sons have benefited greatly from I/I class in the past year. How were they going to supplement?

The teacher explained what happened (retirement and funding collided) and assured us she was supplementing her own daily instruction with I/I lessons.

Somehow, some part of the conversation, required her to mention my daughter.

I was momentarily, briefly, struck.

"I know you have a daughter and your son is both a first born and a middle born and ….." she rambled off. I checked out for a moment for I noticed the instant she  mentioned my daughter, my sons sister, my son reacted. What was that? What was he thinking and feeling? Why the reaction?

Later in the evening, over a dinner of tacos and quesadillas, I mentioned it to my son.

"Did it bother you that Mrs. D mentioned your sister?" I asked him.

"Huh? Wha.? No. Not all." He says.

"Oh" I say. "Cuz I saw you react when she mentioned her and I wondered if it made you uncomfortable or of there was something you wanted to talk about."

"No. Its fine, Mom. I was just worried about you. I did not want you to cry. I know you cry alot when we talk about Sister."

Hours later in the evening we purchase a hamster. The boys are debating in the back seat what to call the newly acquired small ball of fur.  Names are tossed back and forth. Giggles are shared. Names explained and they finally settled on 'Ferbie". Somehow Fur Ball went to Ferbie to Fergie to Ferb and finally Ferbie. (I am not quite sure how our female hamster feels about Ferbie. I may call her Bie).

We get the critter settled in the hamster mansion we purchased and retire for the evening. Being that hamsters are nocturnal we hear Ferbie playing on her wheel for a while.

This morning, I woke early but layed in bed. I heard the boys up and about. I saw a hamster ball roll across the doorway of my bedroom towards the front door.

I smiled.

"Come back here, little sister" squeals my youngest son.

"Her name is Ferbie" says my oldest.

"I know, but she is a girl and she is tiny and a member of our family now so I called her little sister" says my five year old brown haired son.

"She is not our sister. We have a real sister and she is not a hamster. I don't know what she is but she is not a hamster. Please don't call Ferbie our sister" says my oldest quite firmly to his brother.

"Whatever.." says my youngest with a rather annoyed tone.

2 Thoughts.

  1. “She is not our sister. We have a real sister and she is not a hamster. I don’t know what she is but she is not a hamster. Please don’t call Ferbie our sister” says my oldest quite firmly to his brother.”
    That is a child quote of a lifetime, I tell you. It brought tears to my eyes. I think it was thinking of your precious son saying “I don’t know what she is but she is not a hamster”.
    Geesh, from the mouths of babes…
    Love ya!

  2. I am not a hamster either. I am a girl. I am a daughte to two mothers, sister to one sister and a sister to three brothers from 2 different mothers. I am a dancer, ballet and jazz. I am a rider, english rider. A champion to one mother, a ghost to another. A treasure to one mother, a lost soul to another. A friend to a sister but a mystery to three brothers. The worst I have ever done to one mother is get a tattoo and find my other mother. The worst I’ve done to the other is not call. With all of this, mit as well be a hamster, huh?

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