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It's Not That Simple

What do I tell my kids when their lives are about to change in ways that I myself do not fully comprehend yet?

Blending families is one special task, realizing that no matter how beautiful everything feels or looks, you have to cater to every single heart and mind involved.

The making of a love relationship takes two people, and even with that, it is still so much harder to get two people to understand, accept, and love each other unconditionally. However, blending families takes a lot more than just two people.

Yes, two people may be a catalyst for this adventure. But it takes a lot of hearts and minds, and if done right, hopefully, we can harmonize together and create a beautiful song ... but oh dear, it can also become a wild adventure, and everything can be a complete disaster.

You fall in love with someone and you envision a future together. But the kids have their own thoughts and ideas, they have their struggles in trying to understand what is going on. If you pay attention, you will realize the underlying anxiety, thoughts, and questions they may not yet know to articulate. Eirik ( my husband) and I were prepared for the blending; we were so blessed because our kids love each other.

However, I don't think we were prepared for a lot of questions that would come up, the feelings of being replaced, the fear that you will be loved less, the fear of loss and also... the big one... if the real dad or real mom and their spouse also move in with us? It is also the fear that loving the new bonus parent will mean they are being disloyal to their biological parent.

These are real-life issues, questions, scenarios, and fears that blended families are faced with. Most people would usually address these as they come, but in a true Nontobeko way, I thought it would be the best way to address some of these questions, to validate the kids, and also drive home what this really means for them by writing the book.

We have tested the book; they can reflect on it and they can put themselves in the shoes of these kids while they read through the story and in the end they can say "ohh just like our lives."

Instead of waiting for them to ask, or even figure out what thoughts or feelings they are wrestling with, it is nice to help them find words that describe what they feel and address the feelings they may be dealing with to show them that we see, we understand and we care.

The book is real, fun, adventurous, and a little more or less of our story. This is the way that I thought would be a book that explains what it means to blend a family, what the kids can expect, and mostly what is important and hopefully they also look forward to the blending with open hearts and minds and with so much ease.


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