Monday, March 07, 2011

Chalk and Cheese 4

Muffin hasn't featured in this entire series. It is supposed to be about the twins and their differences. So, it's not really about him. But he is their baby brother and one of the ways that they are very different is how they actually respond to him.

Right from the get go, there was a difference. Evan was the typical boy. Ambivalent and amused that he had a little brother but generally treating him tolerantly, because we told him to. But more importantly was that Muffin's arrival played up Evan's little insecurities. He wanted me all the time and didn't like that I had to feed, nurse or get Muffin to sleep. He whined a lot and behaviours regressed a little bit.

But as Muffin got older, he grew more protective of his little brother. He was still very boy with the way he dealt with Muffin. Not knowing how to stop him from falling or not knowing how to help me if Muffin was stuck in a mini-quandary. But at the same time, he showed consideration with his brother, would ask about Muffin's absence and would come and tell me if Muffin was crying. He also learnt how to play with Muffin. Chasing him, pushing him around in the car and showing him things. He is actually much gentler with Muffin than Jordan is; he doesn't scold Muffin and order Muffin imperiously the way Sister Dowager does.

Strangely enough, he has become very protective over his older sister who constantly gets mauled by the little baby. And that in itself was heartening to watch as well. This video was taken last August and I'd blogged about it then.

Jordan on the other hand is the BIG sister. Disregard her small size, she's a Nazi sister. She polices her siblings, especially Muffin. Evan, I suspect, she sees as an equal rather than a little brother. So most of her effort goes toward disciplining the little Muffin. She says NO to him, she takes things away from him and she heaves him out of danger quite regularly.

And we never really taught her any of this explicitly. We tell her the same things we tell Evan. Look after their brother, don't let him get hurt, don't let him walk on the road. But she seems to have taken it more to heart and taken it much more seriously. When Muffin cries, she grabs tissue paper. She does the same thing for Evan too but with Muffin, she is more forthcoming.

But at the same time, she is in love with him. She is very amused by him and wants to always kiss him and hug him. We've always had a problem trying to keep Little Miss Hacking or Little Miss Drippy Nose away from Muffin. As a result, when they have a runny nose, Muffin has one too.

Generally, their differences boil down to the gender stereotypes. She behaves typically girl and he the typical boy has possibly enough nurture ability to fillhis little toe. But the way they've reacted to Muffin has rubbed off on him. He is gleeful and makes a types of bird like shrieky noises when they come home from school and he has learnt from them how to take care of them as well. He pats Evan on the head when Evan tries to play with the stray cat despite my warning as if warning him; "Be careful, Mommy says be careful!". He strokes his sister when she falls and cries.

I want them to continue being so close as they grow up. And hopefully this looking out for each other, in their own little ways continues.

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