I know I only posted yesterday (I must be the most inconsistent blogger ever!), but I wanted to write about my recent experiences of sharing family stories with C and H.
Even since they were born, I’ve tried to regularly tell them ‘stories’ from my head as well as from books. Usually these have been recounts of what we’ve done that day or of special events that have taken place.
Yesterday, however, we were on a loooooooooooong walk home (the buggy tyre had gone flat and it was very hot, so we were all a little persnickety) and I needed a way to distract the boys and keep them happy until we got home for dinner. C asked if I could tell them a story and have it be, “one of those ones where the words are written in your head, Mummy”.
So, I told them an elaborate version of an incident that happened to me on holiday in Malta when I was young, involving me dropping our room key down a lift shaft and being very worried about what my mum and dad would think. This story also included my sister and I jumping in the swimming pool a LOT (and I acted this out with C and H, to the great amusement of Leamington’s rush hour), pressing the buttons in a lift (H loves to do this) and eating cheese, tomatoes and bread (very popular with both boys) so it had all the necessary elements to be a hit.
Over and above this, C likes to hear stories about Granny Moo (my mum) and asks lots of questions about why she’s not here and what it’s like in heaven. This is exactly what I wanted for the boys – to know her as much as possible given that they will never actually being able to ever meet her – and it makes me happy to talk about Mum lots as well.
C was also keen to talk about the theme of doing something wrong (even if it was an accident) and saying sorry, then working out how to solve the problem.
I suppose I just wasn’t prepared for quite how much hearing a ‘personal’ story would resonate with the boys. I’m not sure if it’s because it included family members, because it showed Mummy making a mistake, or because it was a story told from memory, but C has asked me to retell this story about twenty times since yesterday. He has now started telling the story back to me as well and is also asking H if he can tell it to him again.
There’s no deep and meaningful point I want to make, but just wanted to record this here as a reminder to me to do this more often than I do. It’s easy, costs nothing and it really doesn’t matter if the story isn’t exactly the same each time. Simple, happiness-inducing fun. Awesome.
N.B. I know this isn’t directly relevant, but in case C and H should ever read this, here is a photo of Mum to illustrate this story. I can’t find a digital photo to include that she’d be happy with (she hated having her photo taken) so it’s a link to a photo from an opera production in which she took part. Thanks for humouring me.