Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Greater Love Hath No Sister

Once upon a time when I actually planned how my life would go, instead of the fly by the seat of our pants life we have now, I planned to have my children fairly close together. I wanted them to be about 2 1/2 to 3 years apart. I wanted them to be close. Friends, if possible. There's six and a half years between me and my brother and it's not that we aren't friends, but it is really only since we've both become adults and had children that we've reconnected.

I mean, we played together as kids and on nights when my mom had to work late, my brother would cook frozen pot pies for us and I always remember that he would carve my initials in the dough on top.

But then he got to be a teenager and he was gone a lot. And then he went off to college when I was only in the sixth grade. And right after college he moved to Thailand for two years.

So, I wanted my kids to have more time together at home. And wonder of wonders, everything started to go according to plan. Right after Bubba turned 2 I discovered I was pregnant again, which meant the new baby would be born when he was between 2 1/2 and 3. PERFECT!

And things have been mostly good. Bubba never seemed to suffer from any sibling rivalry, was never jealous of the new baby -- though that might be because we celebrated Big Brother Day on the day Punkin was born, trying to make the day about him, too.

They've always gotten along really well. Punkin adores Bubba and has become a little mimic -- repeating everything he says, doing whatever he does, sometimes much to our chagrin. But lately, everybody has gotten a little peckish. Bubba doesn't want Punkin touching any of his toys, even if he's not playing with them. Punkin', knowing this, will grab a toy and run off, already screaming because she knows he's right behind her, ready to tear the toy from her grasp.

I've become like the U.N. , running peacekeeping missions all day long. "Bubba, can she play with that toy for a little while? You're not playing with it right now."

"Okay," he'll grouse. "But it's not YOURS, Punkin. It's MINE! You can just look at it."

Or "Punkin' give that back to Bubba right now. He was playing with that. You have to wait your turn."


The other night, Mr. Daddy pulled up some videos on You Tube of Polynesian fire dancers (my dad and step mom just returned from Hawaii). Bubba was fascinated and immediately started searching the house for something he could use as a "torch." Coincidentally, at the same time, Punkin was playing dress up in her cheerleader costume and we had pulled her red and black pom poms down from her dresser.

She had two of them. Bubba had one too, but that was just the problem -- he only had one. And he needed two to properly execute a Polynesian fire dance.

"I wish I had one more pom pom" Bubba whined. "Can I play with one of Punkin's?"

"I don't know, Bubba. That's up to her. But you haven't been very good about sharing your toys with her lately."

He stood there, looking forlornly at her pom poms.

Punkin looked at him and smiled and said so sweetly "I'll just have one, Bubba" and handed him one of her pom poms.

And so, sometimes, I think, there is hope after all.


AndreAnna said...

Considering my kids are going to be 26 months apart, I am hoping that they will be friends as well. You know, once Charlotte gets past the fact that she is no longer the princess, which may or may not take 86 years.

And Polynesian fire dancing? Hysterical!

Sounds like Punkin taught Bubba a lesson in humility. :)

1blueshi1 said... I have this mental picture of Bubba, the breakdancing Polynesian torchbearer, that is cracking me up! hehehe

photomommy said...

That sounds like what goes on here between Aaron and Emma, and they are just over six and a half years apart.

I hope as they get older (Aaron is 9 and Emma is almost 3) things straighten out between them, because they are at each other's throats constantly!

Laurel said...

My kids are the best of friends/worst of enemies. It is play, play, play, bicker around here this summer. But I am glad they are close. I've also found that my second is a much better sharer than my first. I guess they have to be!

And hey! I'm jealous of your day yesterday. It sounded pretty close to heaven.

P.S. Thanks for the congrats. It made my day!

calicobebop said...

Awww, that's sweet. My younger sister is two years behind me and she was the perfect playmate.

BTW, where are the pictures of the Polynesian Fire Dance? :)

Colleen said...

how sweet!...especially after being a big of stinker herself. :)

my kids are 37 months apart...and I also planned it that way. Only 2 yrs seemed like Gavin would not be independent enough to handle a younger sibling without a lot of fights and I'm glad we waited. said...

The age difference thing has always been an issue with me. My brother and I are 7 year apart and still cannot be in the same room without fighting. Hubby had two younger brothers by the time he turned three. It's always been my dream to have them 3.5 years apart. Guess what? My kid's 3.5 and I'm not even pregnant. Sigh.

Karen said...

I love that she loves her bro enough to share. In our house it's all take all the time.

All Adither said...

My kids are exactly two years apart. I mean, exactly. And I'm so happy and grateful to have them close together. But the fighting, holy gah! It's the worst.

Tootsie Farklepants said...

Who knew that Polynesian fire dancing would foster the art of negotiation!

ImpostorMom said...

There are 7 years between me and my brother and I feel like we'd be closer if we didn't live so far away from each other. But I totally get what you're saying about wanting them closer than that. I'm still on the fence about a 2nd though. :P