I am often asked how J has coped with the arrival of his younger brother. I never know quite how to answer, as some upheaval and tantrums are sure to be par for the course, so I usually say he’s mostly taken it in his stride save for a few extra tantrums here and there and a few times where his touch has been a bit rough.
But really that’s life as a toddler, the 2 1/2 year age gap is one of navigating the newborn neediness alongside a toddler who still wants his mummy-time while wrestling with the pull of his own independence. Which on some days has left me exaperated, frustrated and completely arse-kicked to parenting desperation land.
In the time since Hugo has arrived on the scene, Jarvis has been day and night toilet trained (post on that coming up!), is moving to drop his day sleep and has resumed weekly speech therapy, so it’s been a big five months of challenges and growth for him too. Which is a fact I keep reminding myself of when I feel the frustration bubbling to the surface.
Just lately, I’ve noticed instead of just dealing with Hugo being around he’s starting to really enjoy him. He requests that I sit him ‘HERE, HERE’ as he pats the space next to his on the couch. He then casually slings his arm around his baby brother’s shoulder. He sits next to him on the floor and shows him different toys, and even when he climbs on top of Hugo and I’m about to chastise him for being too rough, his baby brother smiles and giggles and starts to grab his big brother’s hair.
He is now happy to share my lap with his brother instead of protesting that it’s ‘MY TURN’ and trying to shove him off. He introduces Hugo as ‘BABY’ to anyone he just meets and showers him with kisses and hugs.
I love watching them interact and their relationship grow (as my instagram feed attests. I just can’t stop taking photos of them together.) Although there are sure to be many battles ahead, fights and scrapes, I love that they have each other to lean on when only a brother will do.