Despite their near constant squabbling, we get glimpses every now and again of the bond that lays beneath the pestering and teasing. Like when we ask who they want to invite to their birthdays and they say each other right near the top of the list.
Today something a little sad happened after school, but it brought me so much joy.
We live right next to a park that has two other cauldersacks that join onto it. Often different neighbours kids are there playing with one another. Some we know, some not so much.
This afternoon some kids came knocking at our door asking if Tony and Carter were allowed to come play. Before I could say "yes", they were already out the door.
About twenty minutes later they were back. Tony came in the door first and I asked if they had fun. He seemed angry and said;
"No! Because some of those kids are stupid idiots!"
I pressed him to find out why he was so angry and he burst into tears and said;
"Some of them were being mean to Carter. They had his ball and he was asking for it back but they just kept passing it to each other."
He was really sobbing and it made me both sad and happy at the same time to see how much he cares about his little brother.
Some of the other kids were being kind and standing up for Carter, but Tony said they still wouldn't give the ball back so after trying verbally to get them to do the right thing, he went and gave one of the bullies a shove. One of the older bullies told Tony if he shoved the boy again he would get Tony back twice as hard. Tony admitted he was scared but stepped forward to hold his ground and show he wasn't backing down and they soon went home.
Tony is rather timid socially and doesn't like confrontation so even though I don't condone violence, I was happy to let this slide and even mentally cheered.
When it comes to siblings, those bonds are strong. They have to be to withstand how stretched they are on a day-to-day basis with what we put each other through. As much as we tease and torment our siblings, when anyone else even tries to do the same, there is no doubt where our loyalties lie. Just try me.