Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Sibling Revelry

There was a moment today that just went so wrong in so many ways. Andrew sat in jelly just as Simone bonked her head and Jack started whining about food. We'd missed his window for eating, so he crashed...and that's not good for anyone in our family. Argh. I was trying to get us ready to get out the door, looking around at the messy house that Steve's parents will be visiting tomorrow, and feeling like I really did not like being a mother. In that moment it was only about the Yucky Stuff. Messy, whiny kids, dirty house, blah blah blah.

I really wanted a nanny. Sometimes I just want to wiggle my nose and hire someone for just 10 minute increments. Or an au pair just to let me sleep until 8AM and then do her own thing the rest of the day. I have low standards. :)

But then that moment will pass and Andrew will do something amazing, like immediately give Simone a hug when he accidentally knocked her over. From this place of real softness, not because we asked him to do it. And then Jack heard the crying, and came in. He said, "Look, Monie," and showed her how twirl in the middle of the kitchen, hoping to make her feel better. And I got this flash of awareness that even in the middle of the unproductive, messy, uggy stuff going on, we're doing important things just by being together. I'm watching these siblings become something bigger than I imagined. They are a family together, separate from Steve and I.

Hearing Jack and Andrew tell jokes in the back. They have this secret language. This depth of understanding. I was struck by the thought that they are more connected to each other then either of them are to me, genetically. How beautiful. That I didn't just create children with Steve, we created siblings. And even after we're gone, they'll have these persons in their lives that know their history, have that connection, that sense of knowing.

I know they say you can't expect your children to be best friends, and strangely enough, I didn't. But I wonder if in expecting a distance between them, I created a lack of pressure that allowed that friendship to form. They fight over toys and bicker before bedtime, but there's this bond between them that just blows.me.away. I can't explain it. The gentle warmth between them. It's real love! Real connection. They have something really important forming in their foundation, and it brings me more joy in motherhood than anything I could have imagined.

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