Here we go. Four years old, and a week out from two. My girls have entered ‘the rivalry zone.’
“Mom! Lo pushed me! She just pushed me! Mom! Lo just pushed me again!” Brianne complains.
“Mom! Bee…is….pushing…me…..Mom….Beeeeeeeeee…..iiiissss….ppppuussshhhhiiinggg…meeeeeeeeeee.” Lo whines.
This is the scene all day long. Like building up the stamina to run miles at a time, I’ve attained the ability to tune them out. At least until 5:30pm. My husband doesn’t get much of a chance to build up his tolerance, being at work all of the time. He is toast after a half an hour.
“It’s my day off. I just want to relax.” he’ll say.
“It’s my life. I just want to relax…” I’m thinking…probably out loud.
It’s hard for me to believe that Lauren has already caught up to the age that Brianne was when she was born. Brianne, along the way, has been impatient to wait for her little sister to be able to keep up with her. Little sister is always ‘too slow,’ or ‘too wiggly to read books,’ or ‘too whiny….’ If Lauren could have talked along the way until now, she would have been complaining about how her big sister is ‘too bossy,’ or ‘too pushy,’ or ‘won’t share her toys with me…’
I remember telling Bri, like every other mom tells their older kids, “you had better learn to share now…pretty soon you’ll want to play with your sister’s toys and she won’t let you.” Or, the classic…
“Just wait until your little sister hits you back…see how you like it.”
Brianne, hurt feelings and in tears, after Lo hauls off and pushes her for no reason at all accept to start drama, is experiencing her first “I told you so” moment.
And, like many other parents grasping to get the reciprocity point across, I say….
“Now, how does that feel? Not so good, does it? Don’t hit…either of you.”
(And that is my first, ‘omg I’m turning into my mother’ moment.)
I knew they would start squabbling sooner or later, but I really figured that Brianne would be the instigator of the two of them. She’s not at all. More times than not, she’s the victim. Lo will determinedly march into big sister’s room, grab whatever toy she’s playing with out of Brianne’s hand, and take off running. I can hear the chase down the hall until she’s been caught, and the toy has been taken back. Then little sister runs to me….
“Mom! Bee took that from me! It’s mine!”
Lauren hits, pushes, and flat out screams in her sister’s face all day long. Tug of war over toys, stealing each others snacks…it’s relentless. So strange, because they love the crap out of each other!
When they wake up in the morning, or from naps, the first thing they do is look for each other. When I make one of them cry, the other one is mad at me for it. When other little kids are around, they look out for each other, and include each other. Now, I’m not sure how long that will last….they’ll probably swap getting along at home for sharing friends…but it’s at least we have some balance.
All of the sudden, my two little girls are playing in the kiddie pool in the backyard, watering the roots of a friendship that will last for the rest of their lives. In some ways I feel they’ve figured out more about being friends than some adults. Maybe, being sisters, they learn to get over their squabbles quickly or they’ll have no one else to play with. They have unconditional love for each other. It’s sweet. I hope they never grow out of it.
Happy Sibling Rivalry…