A couple of weeks ago I was in my home city of Sydney and spent a few days with my biological family – my parents, my brother, nephew and two nieces.
It was a lovely time. Mum only said a few things to offend me which must be a record. Dad is hard of hearing so it was good to be in the room with him to converse. My brother truly loves having all his family around and takes advantage of every moment with photos and many conversations. My nieces at 10 and 7 are growing up so fast and have changed every time I see them and my beloved nephew, who’s 15, became surprisingly talkative at certain moments.
My older niece so resembles my brother but being female is also very like me at her age. She has my round eyes and my rounded arms (sorry Miss P!) and my thick hair (though hers is blonde). She’s a giggler like I was and loves to do impressions and tell stories in extremely longwinded fashion as I did. And she’s oh so sensible and patient, particularly with her siblings’ failings. Yep, me … well most of the time.
As I spend most time with my partner’s children to whom I have no biological connection, it was funny to be reminded how much this one niece and my nephew look and act like me. It was bizarre to realise that they even smell familiar. Yes, I truly believe there’s a shared smell in our skin and hair! There was something comforting and calming in smelling it.
As I helped my older niece Miss P with her hair, she pulled out some familiar hair slides. My mother has somehow saved hairslides from when I was Miss P’s age, meaning these hairslides are now about 35 years old! Couldn’t believe how good they still looked or how many memories they brought back. Like that I chose the one with the red arrow through the blue and white hearts because they were my football team’s colours.
Being the sensible little miss that she is, Miss P knows she’s holding onto a special inheritance. When it came to going home to her Mum’s house, the jewellery box I had given her came out and these precious ‘jewels’ that once belonged to her aunt were slipped in til next time she was at Grandma’s house.