Pictures on the Wall

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Like Kweenmama, my home is my castle and I am the queen.  And the the objects that I chose to display reflect this.  Ethan’s comment about not being in vacation pictures was like an ephiphany.  Maybe part of the reason that Ethan has been so standoffish is because he does not feel welcomed in his home…

It has been been a huge adjustment  for everyone having an instantly larger family.  But maybe I haven’t been sensitive enough to the fact that it was probably a lot harder for Ethan and Evan to make the transition.  Especially considering the situation that landed them on our doorstep.  They had also lived with their uncle for two months prior to coming to our home.  Eliza was pretty much snatched away from them, even though it was by her own doing.

I had long ago taken down the old pictures of them that used to hang in our home.  After Eliza forbade my husband to see them and the court would not force her to do so, he could barely stand to look at their pictures without getting upset.

On the ride from Wisconsin I pondered over his comment.  If you walk through our house, photos of Nicholas can be found everywhere.  And I do mean everywhere, even in the bathroom and the kitchen!  My aunt affectionately refers to our house as “Nicholas’ Musuem.”

When the boys came to us, we quickly converted a spare room into their bedroom.  They were literally dropped off at our doorstep so we had no time to redocorate and of course, this extra room contained several pictures of Nicholas, too.  And it still does.  I had planned on getting around to making the room “theirs,” but the only thing I have managed to do is buy new bedding.

Out of the mouths of babes we can gain much wisdom.  I’ll admit that I don’t really want to rearrange my home because I like it the way it is.  But I know that I have to.  I looked around last night trying to decide what pictures of Nicholas to remove.  I couldn’t find a single one because I love them all.  I love the picture of him that graces the sofa table that was photographed in just the right light that highlights his chubby, cherubic toddler face.   And I am especially fond of the one I snapped of him lounging placidly on his toybox smiling perfectly for the camera.  I love the black and white photo in which he is grinning so impishly.  I could go on and on…

Most importantly I want Ethan and Evan to be able to look around and KNOW that they belong.  The house belongs to us all, just as I’ve come to understand that the kids, in a sense belong to us all–Eliza, my husband, and myself.    Despite the fact that I was not intentionally trying to exclude them from our family, that was the message being sent.  

 I think Ethan felt this way even more so than Evan.  At least his artwork is displayed prominently throughout the house.  But subconsciously I felt that Eliza was going to come whisk them away sooner or later–so why make any changes?  I remember how hurt my husband and I both felt when the court returned them to her three summers ago.  They left without a second thought and we did not see them again until Eliza was arrested. 

This afternoon I plan to stop by Michael’s and Hobby Lobby to get some picture frames and mats.  I have a little redecorating to do.

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2 responses »

  1. I think this is a wonderful idea! I think it will do wonders in helping the boys feel a part of your family. I remember the first time I displayed one of my stepson’s outstanding school projects and how he took great pride in the fact that it was displayed in our home. Now all the kids are comfortable hanging the stuff they are proud of in our display area on their own. I don’t even have to do it anymore, they take care of it themselves.

    P.S. Thanks for the link!

  2. I can so understand your delima. I don’t have pictures of my stepdaughter from when she was younger than 8, when we met, so I asked my mother-in-law if she had some that I could copy and hang. I, too, have pictures of my biological daughter all over the place, but I have made it a point to have a family picture taken once a year and I hang those all over. It’s so difficult to fuse every aspect of the blended family, but you are doing such a fantastic job of doing it!

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