Break it Down

This will be a short post for today as I’m running on tea and three chocolate chips, so enjoy the quick (and hopefully painless) read.

“So the question ….. are Brett and Shannon the biological parents of all three of you?”

To give the reader some context, the “three of you” in this question refers to Nichole (sister), Caleb (brother), and me (me).

Great question! The short answer is no, Brett is not my biological parent. Shannon is my biological parent. Brett + Shannon are Nichole + Caleb’s biological parents.

Let me break this down.


-Shannon + Brad had me, the coolest person you’ll ever meet. Brad is my biological father and is also pretty cool. You all have been introduced to Shannon already..her coolness exceeds all expectations.

-Brett would have been my step-father in a different life, so I call him my step-father in this life! It is much easier than explaining the whole story, especially when we’re in Costa Rica about to get on a zip line with only a few minutes to talk. Brett was there in the hospital when I was born, and held me and loved me, so to me he is just as much my biological father as Brad is, without replacing him! I know that doesn’t make sense according to science, but according to Alana it does, so get over it. I have my own science. Brett has also been a huge part of my life since meeting my biological family, so he is so much more than “the guy who my biological mom married after having me”. He is title-worthy, and that title is “greatest step-dad of all time”. He is also the biological father to my brother and sister, and I love them and anyone who made them. So hopefully with that explanation it’s easy to understand the heart-tie I have to Brett.

-Shannon + Brett got married (after Shannon had me) and they had Caleb + Nichole, the coolest youngest siblings you’ll ever meet.

-This makes Caleb + Nichole my half siblings, but this is something I often forget. I refer to them as my brother and sister, not as my halfsies. Although I do feel whole when I’m with them, so maybe they are my halfsies. Or each of them is my one-thirdsies. Or one-fourthsies if we’re counting Andy. But then I’d want Jen to be counted as well, and I’ll be gaining another sister-in-law in May, so let’s just stick to halfsies, because I hate math but love all these people. Heart eyes.

Nichole + Caleb are both younger than me, which makes my life so much easier. Nichole is my favorite sister (she’s my only sister), Caleb is my favorite younger brother, and Andy is my favorite older brother. To include everyone, Jen is my favorite sister-in-law, and when I get married and have another sister-in-law, we will add “younger” and “older” to really round everything out. For someone who doesn’t like to admit to having favorites (me), I love being able to have favorite siblings. Why don’t I like admitting to having favorites, you ask? Great question. I really don’t like to make people or things feel excluded by liking someone or something more than them. For example, I am very hesitant to admit to having a favorite flower because I don’t want to make the others feel left out. I did not like admitting to having a favorite stuffed animal growing up for the same reason. Mhm. Inanimate objects. Mhm.

-I consider Brett’s parents, Melanie & Emmett, to be my grandparents. Brett’s sister is my aunt. These people are just as much my family as any biologically related person and I love them more than words can say. You should really meet them. They’re pretty fantastic. 


I do want to point out that the distinctions made in this post (who is biologically related, who isn’t, etc) are not things that I normally think about. For example, Gma Melanie is Gma Melanie, she is not “the-guy-who-my-biological-mother-married-after-having-me’s mom”.

I hope this brings more clarification to our family dynamic! Keep in mind that I am only writing about the people I know and have met so far..there are still several other pieces to my family puzzle that have not been explored just quite yet.

Please keep questions coming my way and thank you for reading and giving feedback!

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