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When Brothers Finally Become Brothers

Could it be?
Am I hearing right?


My 2 sons have always been polar. One is like this, the other is that. One is competitive, the other laid back. One is choosy of friends, the other Mr. Congeniality. During parties, one likes cake, the other ice cream (so I always HAVE TO get both). If I ask what do you guys want for dinner? Simultaneously, one will say "Fried," the other "Stewed".

My eldest is not the type who likes little kids, so you can imagine his orneriness to the younger brother. This plus being 5 years apart, you can somehow expect bullying and neglect.

My sibs and I started the same way. Super bullying and mega fights and hyperduper crying, until it all evolved into a relationship that is just too special for me. My love for those 2 dorks are a notch up above everyone else's. Sometimes, I think, more than I love my parents (weird, but true).

With all the boys' shouting and crying and even bodily violence when they were little, sometimes it broke my heart. Of course, I didn't show it. I just let the boys be who they are as a brother. Sometimes, when one expresses bad feelings about the other, I try to explain why the other was nasty while ALSO trying to not invalidate the feelings. They should be allowed to feel what they feel, and feel safe enough to share it. When raising boys, it does not do good to encourage them to recognize their feelings and when they do, you overrule them because he felt bad about the sibling. You can encourage peace, but not invalidate how they feel. You have to make boys see that it's safe for them to share feelings and they won't be shot down, even if the feeling is not so acceptable. They should feel accepted as they are, not only because they follow what is expected. I believe, when they feel safe, they will do what is expected of them voluntarily.

I digress. Anyhoo, I was praying that they'd grow and eventually be to each other what my sibs and I are to one another.

- -

Last night, the brothers went up late. A little later, I can still hear them talking quietly. Then some quiet laughing, then more talk talk talk. This meant less than 8 hours sleep for the younger one, but I let them be. This time at least.

There was something different with their talk this time. A little more tender?... And their laughter, a little more honest than usual... It used to be that they only laughed like this only if there's a cousin or a friend around. But now, there's just them and that laughter is delicious to hear.

Finally, sibling bonds kicking in.

And me, motherly giddiness.

I can't stop smiling.


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Comments

Mrsbear said…
That's a really sweet post.

My girls are always always bickering, but at bed time when they're wishing each other good-night, they always follow it with an "I love you." They rarely giggle together, but when they do, and I'm lucky enough to witness it, it really makes me feel like I've been granted access to a special moment.

Glad they're feeling brotherly.
kat said…
must be the age. heehee

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