Friday, February 12, 2010

They Really Like Each Other!

Lately Madeline and Charlie have become great pals! For the first six months of Charlie's young life, their relationship could be boiled down to a general awareness. Madeline would join him for tummy time, and often asked to hold him, but she'd get bored after about 13 seconds and toss him aside (I was always there to catch him as he toppled over). Then, once Charlie started crawling, Madeline had to adjust to him snatching her toys. She would hop up on furniture and say, "Mommy, get Charlie!" as he came closer and closer...

But lately, they genuinely enjoy each other. Madeline begs me to let Charlie sleep in her room with her. She loves jumping into his toddler bathtub with him, and lovingly roughs him up with her enthusiastic hugs and kisses. That said, three year olds are clever and manipulative -- she has learned to tell me she was "just giving Charlie a hug" when she happens to take his toy or accidentally (hmmm...) knock him down. But these lapses are few and far between. Most of the time, she's rubbing his back, sharing her juice boxes, climbing into his crib with him or helping feed him dinner (messy but adorable). In fact, the other day, Charlie started crying while Madeline was upstairs. She bolted down and bellowed with heartbreaking concern, "Does Charlie want me?" I melted when a neighbor asked Madeline who her best friend was and she answered matter-of-factly that it was her Charlie.

My sisters are my best friends. Maybe it's for this reason that I feel one of my most important jobs as a mother is to foster respect and lifelong friendship between my children. I remember reading an article in Time magazine several years back saying that siblings are the unexplained force that shapes our personalities:
From the time they are born, our brothers and sisters are our collaborators and co-conspirators, our role models and cautionary tales. They are our scolds, protectors, goads, tormentors, playmates, counselors, sources of envy, objects of pride. They teach us how to resolve conflicts and how not to; how to conduct friendships and when to walk away from them. Sisters teach brothers about the mysteries of girls; brothers teach sisters about the puzzle of boys. Our spouses arrive comparatively late in our lives; our parents eventually leave us. Our siblings may be the only people we'll ever know who truly qualify as partners for life. "Siblings," says family sociologist Katherine Conger of the University of California, Davis, "are with us for the whole journey."
It's a privilege to be Madeline and Charlie's mom. Individually, they bring more joy and laughter to our lives than we could hope for. But to watch them together? Now this is the good stuff.

5 comments:

Mollie said...

This is the most ADORABLE blog to date!!!!!!! The pictures alone are worth a thousand words.....

Does Charlie want me???!?! ADORABLE!

Erica said...

I concur with Mollie - how ADORABLE! They look like two peas-in-a-pod...

katie said...

Awwwww....they are both incredibly sweet! You are making me think about wanting another WAY before I should! :)

Johanna said...

Love that bit from Time! So true. Makes me want to have a million more.

The Brown Family said...

I love this post Meg! That last photo is the cutest thing I've ever seen. Just precious.