Sweet Brother and Big Sister

Suffice it to say that Sweet Brother looms larger in real life, than in this drawing of him with his mother – made by his sister on his first day home. Now, nearly three weeks later, although nested with his mother most of the time, he’s an impactful presence.

I don’t remember the day my sister came home. Do any oldest children remember the day? Such a profound event – gaining a sibling – influencing us forever. The initial arrival brings sudden puzzling changes, distracted grownups, and most of all a very busy – with somebody else – mother.

And then there’s this long-awaited baby in person – after months of imagining a playmate, a partner, reality presents in this useless form. I remember Lady B telling me how she’d teach her brother about seat belts and helmets and how to keep safe (now – three years later – she does that). Her dad, when his brother came home, dashed to get his best friend next door. They came back with a cowboy hat and six shooter for the baby to wear. When that didn’t work, they lost interest.

Sweet Baby (who should really be Sweet B now, five years old in a month!) has more sustained attention – she falls in the camp of wanting desperately to participate in some way. A virus has stalked amongst us limiting her hands-on exposure, but she understands that in time she will be much help.

And on Valentine’s Day after she received a cobbled together “Best Big Sister” necklace to wear – she made valentines for all of us (she’d already made them for her class). She left out her brother, but told me how wonderful it would be when she could make him one – “in a few years or so!”


14 thoughts on “Sweet Brother and Big Sister

  1. What a sweet post! I was four when my brother was born and I remember sitting with my grandmother in the car in the hospital parking lot, waiting for my father and mother and the new baby to come out. As soon as we were home, I proclaimed that the baby,name Frank after my father, needed a nickname. I vacillated several days between Skipper and Sandy and in the end it was Skipper–for the rest of his life,

  2. I love her drawing of herself with the tiny tiny brother. I don’t remember the day my brother was brought home, but there’s a photo of my 4 1/2 year old self sitting on the living room couch holding my huge (over 10 lbs) brother and looking very very self-conscious and uncomfortable. He was a definite intrusion into my life, which had so far been pretty perfect as far as I was concerned. I can remember him being bathed in the portable bathinette under the kitchen window. The nurse, Mrs. Sherman, was giving the bath, and it seemed a very pleasant and cozy activity.

  3. I can review the memory of my brother, 22 mos younger than I, arriving home as if it were a movie. Snow falling, peeking out the lace curtains of my grandparents’ house while standing on the maroon horsehair sofa, the scene of my father walking around the car, wearing a fedora as men did in the 1950’s. My father reaching down and helping mom out of the car with this bundle in her arms. There were no seatbelts then. My grandmother opening the door, my grandfather beside her and me beside them, as my parents came in with the little bundle that would change my life so profoundly. It is my earliest memory.

    Our Jack is experiencing the same disconcerting and profound transition. His baby brother Benjamin arrived, a bit early and in a dramatic breech delivery, ten days ago. We are all feeling very proud of his mother and father for getting to the hospital JUST in time, and delivering a healthy boy under trying circumstances. Relief adds to the euphoria. Happy times.

    • Oh congratulations Bonny! I am so grateful that difficult birth turned out well ! and these little new fellows must be so close in age – just days!
      And it’s so impressive your early memory!

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