Big Brother, Little Brother

Of all wild beasts, the most difficult to manage.
– Plato , on Boys

My son Jack has a black eye this week, courtesy of his little brother.

I’d like to say that Alex didn’t mean to do it, but he did.

Alex (3) was mad and threw his new remote control truck at Jack (7) and hit him smack under the eye.

Jack wailed, but didn’t retaliate.  No matter how his little brother torments him, it’s not his way to ever purposely hurt Alex back.

(Although perhaps in a bit of karma, Alex tripped while jumping on our bed today and fell right onto a metal bed rail and got his own shiner of sorts.)

Such is the life with boys.

My girls were active, loud, chaotic and crazy-making, but nothing like these boys.

They hurl themselves through life and through our small house.

They shriek.

They chase.

They make enough noise to raise the dead.

At dinner time, they sit side by side and crack each other up all during dinner.

They are loud, silly, messy and totally unacceptable dinner companions to their older sisters (and often to their parents).

When we separate them, though, they sob as if they’re being sent to opposite sides of the earth.  Please, they beg, let us be together!

Last week, we stayed at a hotel to celebrate my birthday and spent a lot of time in the pool.

The older kids took turns carrying Alex around and holding out their arms for him to leap into.  I loved the sight of how they all took care of him.

But it especially made me smile to see my “baby” Jack carrying Alex around, looking after him so carefully.

These boys make me crazy on an hourly basis.

They break things.

They mess up things.

They jump and shout and leap and swordfight and smash and crash and bash.

But if you ask Alex who his best friend is, he’ll tell you, “My brother Jack.”

At the end of the day, one of the best gifts I could possibly give my boys is that kind of love and connection with each other.

Brotherhood in the best sense.

Of course, one of the best gifts they could give me would be a wee bit less bashing.  😉

A boy is a magical creature–you can lock him out of your workshop, but you can’t lock him out of your heart.
– Allan Beck


Filed under the big stuff

6 responses to “Big Brother, Little Brother

  1. Siblings! Our girls are just like your boys, rambunctious, loud, rough.Just before Xmas Miss 6 broke Miss 8’s finger by slaming it in the door! She didnt meant to break her finger they were playing but they have their moments too…but in the end they love each other…right now they have set up camp and have been playing for the last 5 hours! A good day, but most days are not this quite. Its all a part of having siblings ! (and a shock to 2 parents who were both only kids!)

  2. What a blessing indeed that they have each other.

  3. Thanks for the lovely post… it gives me some things to look forward to (and some things to *not* look forward to!) My 7 y.o. & 6 month old are wild about each other. I like to tease my 7 y.o. by asking him, “Do you think the baby loves you or the cat more?” Obviously, there’s not mistake about the answer to that question… No one can make that baby laugh like his big brother!

    I was told, “Don’t have a 2nd child just so your 1st child can have a sibling…” but the truth of the matter is that our baby was the best gift we could ever have given our older son…

  4. Cheryl

    That was such a heartwarming post!
    When I had my first daughter, born medically fragile, everyone told me that having another child would be too much for me. I wondered if this was true, but I said to my husband “every Lucy needs an Ethel”. We were blessed with a second daughter, and the two of them together are a joy to behold together! It reaffirms my decision every time I see my little one help her big sis to put on fairy wings, or drink from a sippy. (they are 5 and 3) Siblings are a blessing!

  5. I absolutely love this post. It made me tear up a little and reminded me why I still feel so strongly that my Little Miss needs a sibling. I grew up with two sisters and while we really did get on each other’s nerves more often than not, I’m SO glad I wasn’t alone growing up. My littlest sister is one of my best friends and I’m so grateful to my parents for not stopping after they saw me. Lol!

  6. Caitlyn

    This was a beautiful entry. Thanks for sharing it. So sweet.
    Happy Birthday!

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