What it is about brothers? I want to know. I study my boys so intensely...but they will never know why or the anguish and sadness I feel to the depth of my soul as I watch their relationship blossom. Jealousy? Nah. An anguish rages through me like some sort of chemical storm rushing through my veins as I watch the beauty of their relationship grow. But the anger and anguish I feel is obviously not for these sweet boys. The feeling is, however, culminated in an electrified stare through my eyes as I see what they have and the conditions in which they have...no...enjoy their relationship.
I methodically observe and study them as it's important...and I watch their bond grow not in the manner of a rubber-necker looking at a the way two people in love kiss when said rubber-necker has been burned burned burned. No. Not like that. I continue to watch in admiration as it's beautiful and SO important due to the natural and healthy course two brothers can take in growing mutual respect while having each other in their lives for the rest of their lives. It's so important for Amy and I to influence something healthy and beautiful between these amazing little people. We sweat those details more than you know. So the days play each other out and while Amy and I rant to each other over the nonsense on some days, but we know less than discreetly that we want time to stand still even while the fireworks are going off between two little hot heads. We want it to stay this exactly this way....forever. We want the days to be just like these as the "obvious" things are seen...
The fighting: GIVE ME BACK MY TRANSFORMER'S LEG!!!
The relating: You, know, you look like mommy and I look like daddy. Yeah, I look like daddy. But you don't look like daddy. But I do.
The playing: No way! Your rocket didn't hit me! It flew right by my jet! You did NOT blow me up!
The loving: I want you to sleep in my room with me tonight ! I am not scared or anything, but want you to be in my room tonight.
And so, I observe this. And I love it and relish hearing what I hear and what I see....
"Don't worry, it will come," she said as the days ticked away over the summer break before 5th grade would begin. Mom promised this to me with everything she had in her 'mom powers' to console a son who'd been shined. Months prior his brother of 13 years difference left for his first deployment and before he left promised me contact. That's all the little brother wanted. It was clear in his leaving that he was moving away from the family in more senses of the word that can be conveyed here.....with every step up the ladder of his military career. He promised his little brother he'd send some 'real army equipment' that his litter brother would wear and be exactly like him. It was inevitable: he would follow in the footsteps of his big brother because his brother was...everything. Every single solitary thing a child growing in the 70's could want. An extension of John Wayne from the movies little brother and dad would watch together after mowing lawns on incredibly hot and humid days in Connecticut. He was an extension of the Catholic Church and what it meant to me as a boy and how a man is supposed to live with virtue...and with a sword if required to re-enforce this virtue. A man creating a family like we had. A man defending us like I simply thought I needed to do.
The package came but it was anti-climactic. To this day I will never know if the parents berated the bigger brother into 'following through' to appease the little brother's obsessiveness with his bigger brother or if this bigger brother had a natural compulsion to send the olive green utility belt and the rubber canteen to his little 'bro'.
Ah, fuck it. It's irrelevant. I refuse to burn another brain cell on it.
Now, I watch MY two little characters grow. My beautiful young men blossom. Teaching them to appreciate the nuances of their sibling in a way that is not forceful, but in some sense not unlike trying to 'assist' someone with why a certain song is great. And while we know that is not always a fruitful endeavor, it is still a way to continue re-enforcing subtly that there's beauty in everything. EVERYTHING...
Forever side by side
For me, I will never have the opportunity I see my sons have at their life's portal. But, the magic is the way I feel about applying what I thought I could have into ensuring my sons actually have it.
I pray they haze me when we're all old and call me out on my ridculousness. And I'll laugh, as one of them has their head on my chest when I pass, at the joy we had.