Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Brothers are awesome

I grew up always wanting a sister. I dreamed that she would be someone I could tell secrets to, play with and she could be my best friend. Instead, I had two brothers who made fun of me, mercilessly. I eventually did get a sister-in-law who pretty much became the surrogate sister I wanted, though much older. And by then, I had also decided that my brothers were pretty awesome too; that was when they stopped making fun of me and I wasn't out looking for someone to play Barbie with anymore.

My children pretty much follow the same gender configuration as my brothers and I though instead of being the youngest, Jordan is the eldest and the two boys follow after her. And because of their twin nature, Jordan and Evan are naturally close. Jordan and Muffin are close because Muffin is Jordan's 'baby' and she mothers him. Evan shoves her away when she tries to mother him. And while there is natural competition between the two boys, increasingly, Evan and Muffin are closer because they share more and more of the same language and I suspect work on pretty much the same wave length.

On top of that, Muffin hero worships Evan although at this point, Evan finds it an annoyance. Muffin wants what he has, does what he does and goes where he goes. Evan finds it as endearing as he would a buzzing fly. I try to convince Evan that Muffin only does that because he wants to be 'just like Kor Kor'. Evan is skeptical.

Anyway, this afternoon, Evan got through to Muffin in a way no one else could. And thank goodness for that. The little one decided to play with my bedroom's sliding doors. He took it one step further and latched the door from the inside. Because it was a latch, there was no corresponding key to unlock it. That meant Muffin was locked in my room with no way of getting out.

Naturally, he got panicky and started to cry. We tried to calm him down, asking him to play and read while we figured something out. I contemplated, as my parents did when I locked myself in the bathroom as a kid, calling the fire department. But Evan took over the crisis, went to the door and told Muffin on the other side what to do. Where he panicked even more and cried when we tried to tell him what to do, Evan succeeded in getting him to calm down and do as he was told.

It helped that Evan was specific and clear and Muffin understood him. A minute later, the latch was flipped and Muffin slid the door open with a large sheepish grin and teary, red eyes.

Of course he forgot to thank his brother and of course he made light of the situation. "I wasn't troubled, Mommy!" he claimed when we asked him about it later on.

Yes, right. You owe your brother big time for that one. Okay, to his credit, he was very nice to his brother after and sided with him when Jordan inflated Evan's balloon till it exploded loudly.

Earlier in the day when all he cared about was turning into a Ninja Turtle.
So perhaps if Evan's plan of being a scientist doesn't pan out, he can work as a crisis negotiator (though I wouldn't wish him the emotional stress of a job like that). But I think today only happened because he didn't know that I was contemplating calling the fire department. Had he known that, he would have just left his brother wailing and waited; because to him, the fire department breaking the door down would have been infinitely more cool than teaching his brother how to unlatch the door. Never mind the cost it would incur to Mommy and Papa!

But I think they are realising, as I slowly figured out while I was growing up, brothers are great to have around.


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