I remember about a week after our daughter was born I told my husband that maybe one was enough? I was tired and overwhelmed. She would sleep through the night at just 4 weeks old. It would be then that I felt things were “too easy”. I could sense there was one more little soul meant to be with us. There was. It was her little brother, Max.
Maddy is an amazing child. Creative and excited about life. She’s already smarter than me at 6 years old. 😦 It’s true. She wasn’t really thrilled to have someone else needing her mommy. It was a long time before she wanted more to do with him than push him down. Max didn’t really need help with crashing to the floor. He is still pretty unpredictable when steering through life. He will walk backwards fast and playfully, whip around and smack into the wall. He will trip ..on nothing. He will hit his head on the corner of the counter almost every time. It’s pretty tough keeping him bruise and bump free. More than once I’ve said he needs a helmet. So having a 1 and 2 year old was a lot. One was determined to conquer the younger. The other had no idea what she was plotting or how to defend himself.
There came a day when I caught Max “teasing” his sister. I had to hold back my cheers and try to direct his behaviour. But hey, it was finally pay back!!
I’ve reached a point where I witness more sweet moments than horrifying ones. For our son, his sister is his only real friend. She knows his likes and dislikes. She knows how to make him laugh ..and cry. She teaches him things I can’t. Like crashing on the mattress in a series of wild moves. (He modifies them to suit his capabilities). Maddy tells me when Max smells poopy or sneaks off with the iPad.
She hears him cry from across the house. She knows what he wants when I can’t figure it out. After his birthday he got so much joy out of us walking in with the cake while singing Happy Birthday that this little gal did at least 100 walk ins with the stacking cake while singing all to please him and make him smile. She would even make him “say something” first. She also steals his favourite toys and hides them for life. But nobody is perfect.
I know he will always have another kid who cares about him. Who has his back. What a big deal. To know he has a friend with a big voice and a big heart who will be there always. What a job my dear girl has. I know she doesn’t always want it. She has to give up the spotlight a lot so tries so hard to get it when she can. It can’t be easy. Max has had special appointments she wanted so much to be part of. I still admire the people in his life who would work so hard to make sure she felt special too. I don’t know what it’s like to have a younger sibling or to have a sibling with special needs. I have a great pair of little ones. One who won’t talk. One who won’t stop :-). It’s such a fun balance of holy hell and hallelujah. Each makes the other make sense.
We have great joy in this house. Big laughs. Big cries. It can be a bit of a roller coaster hour to hour. Then some days can be easy and carefree. It’s life. We all do it. When you’re in a muddle just remember that all the days mushed together will make sense. They’ll be the story of your life. The beginning. The middle. The end. It comes down to the stuff we toss in with the ups and downs. Those things that mean the most and pull it all together. That stuff you put your heart into. That stuff you do to improve someone else’s time through it all. Ahhh that’s it. It’s not about you. It’s about making life easier for each other. Just like Miss Maddy does for Max. That’s the good stuff.