Brian has had to work a lot of nights lately and the kids are over it. One night last week, Elam was particularly upset and cried, sobbed really. It was bedtime of course and so I carried him up to his too bunk and snuggled for a bit. Eventually XS crawled up too, handed him a tissue and a favorite stuffed animal.
XS doesn’t express compassion very well yet. We can get hurt, have our fish die or even get angry and he seems to be undisturbed. This was really the first time we saw him care about someone’s pain and it was towards the one who bothers him the most!
Then last night I was again putting Elam to bed and XS crawled up, lying next to his brother. He even started rubbing his back, lovingly. Then when it was time to get down he said “night night!” Joyfully and then gave ge-ge a huge hug. Elam looked at me over his shoulder like “oh yeah!”
The big kids notice when he shows affection. He doesn’t spontaneously do it very often. He rarely if ever initiates it. I’d say he tolerates it from Calista, and it really bothers her. Elam’s cracked the code! Isn’t it funny how they can fight like animals, scream like pterodactyls and then fiercely love one another too?
We parents have also noticed XS running to us, hugging our legs when we pick him up at kids club at the Y, greeting us when we get home or even just getting a hug now and then. It makes the hard stuff easier!
Calista has continued to be a helper with the boys. She loved showing XS how to play in the snow. I wish I had a picture from Sunday to compare with today’s view of the backyard. We went from lovely fall to deep winter. Inches of snow and flurries racing across the roads have made Duluth dangerous. I actually read an article yesterday that said we should try to avoid the hills in town… Uh. Like the only thing left then is the lake and that’s not frozen yet!
It’s winter, but with our kids gradually warming up (ooh sometimes it’s just too easy!) to each other and us, I think we can endure. Bring it.