Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Killing us with kindness

You never know, when you have two kids close in age, what their relationship is going to be like.

Sawyer and Sage are 21 months apart. Yes, okay, I'll save you the math. I admit that we did it when Sawyer turned a year. I am sure that that will be a topic of discussion for them one day, as it was for me and my siblings. And I'm also sure that the idea of their parents Doing the Deed will disgust them as it did us as kids. But, as my father liked to say, "What, did you think you were made with a finger?" followed by a maniacle cackle.

Before Sage was born, I'd heard horror stories from friends who couldn't leave their older child alone with their newborn for a minute, otherwise the baby would get kicked, hit or otherwise tortured.

Our kids' relationship, however, got off to an excellent start.

Sawyer really didn't really have all that much interest once the novelty wore off. That, and the fact that Sage cried until the linings of our ears bled. I'm sure the constant racket bugged him as much as it irritated us.

Then, after he turned two, he discovered hitting. Me, mostly. But he did enjoy, when Sage was sleeping in her infant car seat, slamming her in the face with one of his metal planes.

Good times, people!

Sage became mobile at 5 1/2 months, and then it was Game On. Especially once she started walking. Before she was a year, she figured out how to grab his toys and run.

Time went on, and her inability to speak hampered some of their play. Sawyer became the Sage Whisperer, learning how to interpret her jargon.

Sage has, in turn, been looking out for Big Bro. On her last day of speech therapy, the teachers gave her a card with a bunch of stickers on it. When we were leaving, she asked "What about Sawyer? Stickers?" She wasn't satisfied until Sawyer got some stickers, too.

And in the past few days, I've noticed something even more remarkable.

Sawyer is going out of his way to help her. Today she was wearing her EllieBellieKids cape and racing around, thumb raised, and shouting SUPER SAGE! But her whirling and twirling caused the cape to fall off, and she started crying.

"I'll help you, Sage," he said, while securing the cape around her neck.

When she wanted to the bucket he was playing with, he took all his toys out of it to give it her.

All this is without my prompting. He even gets off the couch, from where he's watching Little Einsteins or WorldWorld or Ratatouille, to help her with whatever tragedy has befallen her, like her Hello Kitty pillow falling off the other couch where she's sitting.

I'm not sure if the huge amount of snot in his head is affecting his brain. But I've definitely seen a kinder, gentler little boy.

They still squabble. But mostly, I really think they love each other. Which is the most I can hope for. If they are the only kids we have, I want them to know they can always count on each other.

Even when it comes to chocolate. I doled out a Hershey's kiss for each child after dinner (yes, I know, the Devil Sugar) and Sage kept saying, "One for Sawyer too?" She refused to eat hers until she was sure he was also getting one.

Earlier today, David wanted to take a picture of them. Sage hadn't quite gotten to her seat and Sawyer put up his hand like he was holding off the paparazzi.

He was waiting for his sister.

The best of friends.


Melissa said...

This is what happiness is made of! The pic of the two of them together is as cute as it gets. Congratulations on achieving this very difficult goal (which is currently alluding mother's all over the globe!) May your home be this harmonious for a long, long, long,long time! :)

Amy said...

LOVE, LOVE, LOVE the picture of the them of them together ... makes everything so, so worth it!!

Cheryl said...

Melissa - Yeah, well, you know, they still beat on each other! Altho we did hear giggling the other night when they were supposed to be sleeping and found Sawyer in Sage's crib..

Amy - Thanks! I love how she's looking adoringly at him. She has, really, since Day 1!

Dorothy said...

awwwww! that's the best pic I've seen here!Frame-worthy!

Cheryl said...

Thanks, Dorothy!

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