We have also always talked about Jason's adoption story. At 5, Hannah has only a vague idea of what adoption is. Her basic understanding is that Jason was born to another mommy before he came here. She knows that he has a "mamawl" that he lived with for a while as well as brothers she doesn't know except in pictures. Only recently, she began to ask more questions, seeking, I assume, to fill in the blanks in her head.
It's been interesting to watch Hannah gather information and piece together just how and where and why babies come into the world. She'll ask one question then seemingly drop the subject only to pick it up again 2 weeks later. She'll continue to ask questions until she feels she has enough information. Then she stops, thinks on it for a while and asks some more later. It's kind of fun to watch.
One morning after dropping her brothers off at school, she asked me why Jason didn't live with W. That is a hard question to give to a 5yo who's knowledge of the world does not include abuse, neglect and foster care. I told her in the most basic of terms that his birth mommy wasn't able to take care of him when he was born because she didn't know how to be a good mommy to him. I explained that sometimes when that happens, kids live with other mommies for a while called foster mommies. Jason lived for a long time with his foster mommy, M, while W tried to become a better mommy for him. Then when Jason was 4, he left M to come and live forever with us because W couldn't be the mommy Jason needed and M wanted Jason to have a forever mommy. This was Jason didn't have to worry about moving anymore and Daddy and I would be his mommy and daddy forever.
I did not extrapolate on Jason's feelings about all of this, but simply delivered it as facts knowing that more questions would come. All of this was told in very 5 year old terms and nearly all the information was because of Hannah's continued "Whys?"
By the time I had answered all the questions we had arrived home and were taking off coats. Hannah looked fairly troubled and then burst into tears. I expected her cries to be about her or Micah being taken away or something of that sort. What came out of her mouth floored me.
"I'm just so sad that all that happened to Jason!!!"
She threw herself in my arms and sobbed. She clung to me and asked me why anyone would hurt her big brother and why couldn't he have just come out of my tummy and never been hurt. She cried for what seemed like hours, and I being the emotional woman I am, cried too. I couldn't answer her question any more that I could answer it when Jason asks it.
When I picked up Jason from school that afternoon, I pulled him aside and told him about the conversation I had with Hannah and her reaction. I made sure he understood that I didn't share any of his details, but just the basic timeline and that it had been rather upsetting to Hannah. I wanted him to be aware in case she asked him any questions and told him he could always just direct her to me or Daddy if he didn't feel like talking. Jason, without my prompting, went immediately to Hannah, hugged her and told her that she shouldn't be sad because he wasn't. He didn't like the idea of her feeling any of his pain.
There are times I can't believe how blessed I am to have the children I do. They care so much about each other and love each other so very much.