I have a lot of experience with brothers. I grew up with a brother–he’s older than I am and the poor guy was stuck growing up between two sisters. He didn’t have anyone to play football or wiffle ball with in the yard. Instead, he compromised by putting me in his paper route bag and swinging me around as fast as he could, and then letting go sending me soaring through the front yard. Rather than basketball, he made do with the game ‘Tripper’ which consisted of five-year-old me running as fast as I could and Dan…you guessed it…tripping me. He is closer in age to my older sister, but he and I were a pair growing up. Even though he is my brother and I’m sure I annoyed him by wanting to tag along with him everywhere he went, we never really had that sibling rivalry that many boys have during childhood.
Let me tell you…I’m living it now with my sons, and it is eye-opening. My boys are two years apart in age and the sibling rivalry is alive and well. I’m writing this post on a night where everything I did was wrong. The boys fought from sun up to sun down today, and I was stuck refereeing every argument. I questioned more than once if they even like each other and if they ever will. I questioned whether this brotherly angst is my fault…did I have them too close in age? Should I not have them share a room? Is it because of the bunk beds? Am I ruining them and their sister because I can’t come up with a way to stop the fighting? Today was a day where I was wishing the hours away. I know that sounds awful, like I’m not ‘living in the moment’ and it will all go so fast. I KNOW. But when two of the people I love more than I can put into words are pitted against each other while being intentionally hurtful towards one another, it’s not a moment I want to cherish. It’s a moment I want over, and today every moment was like that.
I knew having two boys would be an adventure. I know brothers fight. I know brothers are each others worst enemies but undoubtedly have each other’s backs as well. I know that when two people spend too much time together, nothing good can come from it. It’s all happening here–the boys are together all day. The boys are annoyed by every movement the other is making. The boys are so competitive that they turn everything into a competition. This morning it was who won the ‘sleeping in’ contest and who finished their waffles first. Our game of Monopoly turned into game 7 Stanley Cup playoff intensity. When the ball my younger son was playing with rolled over by my older son, it turned into a pitching contest. Here’s a hint for you: no contest has a peaceful ending when it comes to brothers playing against each other. No matter what, I have one happy kid and one pissed off kid; and then that usually leads to more fighting.
I didn’t think raising brothers would be so hard. I want so badly for them to get along and be each other’s rock, and there are many times throughout the day when I catch glimpses of that. They do go play baseball together every night from 8:30-9. When my older son is playing hockey on the Xbox, his brother is playing mini-sticks and reenacting the game. They trade hockey cards, and make farting noises when they are supposed to be sleeping. But my goodness do they want so badly to one-up each other and it is driving me absolutely f’ing NUTS.
I hope that when I send them out into the world and they are not living together anymore that they miss each other. I hope that they keep in touch and make attempts to get together to watch football and playoff hockey. I hope they look back on their childhood and laugh.
I also hope they look back and realize they drove me crazy and come bring their poor old mom an expensive bottle of wine.
Love you boys
Raising boys? Like the Mrs Momblog facebook page for more! Click the link below. Thank you!