A while back I joined a group in my area called “The Happiness Project.” In one of their email newsletters, they referenced an article on sisters and happiness: Why Sisterly Chats Make People Happier
I thought the article was really interesting, and it started me thinking about my little girl and her relationship with her brother and all the intricacies of their sibling situation. The article was focused on adult relationships, but of course my mind kept going back to language and kid conversation and the difference between Hannie’s communication and Alex’s communication.
Last week Aubrey and I visited Alex and took him out for a round of mini-golf. On the car ride there, I babbled and commented and babbled on– as I usually do. Alex sat quietly, watching the road (he is so big he can sit in the front seat now, believe it or not!) and listening. At one point I paused and said:
“Moms talk a lot, don’t they?”
which elicited both a smile from Alex and a laugh of agreement from Aubrey in the backseat.
Moms do talk a lot. Apparently, this starts when we’re kids. And if we’re sisters, the talking– just the stream of everyday conversation– can be reassuring and helpful to our siblings because of more than just the content of the words. The routine chatting, describing, talking about the weather, so to speak, in itself can create connection. Maybe it’s not the words exactly, but the word-behind-the-words or the feeling of “sharing life together” we get when someone talks from their own perspective about what’s going on out there in the world.
I mean, c’mon– that’s the reason you read my blog, right?
I like to think that Hannah’s little conversations, the sound of her voice, her questions, the way she says “I love you” will be important to her brother as they grow up not just because of what she says, but because the sisterly babble will remind Alex of the lifelong connection they’ll always share.
What do you think?