When I found out I was having another boy, I was a bit nervous. I had heard horror stories of my co-workers' two boys and the older one finding ways to hit the younger one when the parents weren't looking, to feign love but harbor resentment and disdain for the little brother that ruined big brother's days of royalty as the sole heir in the home. From the beginning of our pregnancy with number two, we got books from the library about brothers, siblings, and baby. Jordan couldn't even talk much then, was communicating with signs, a lot of gestures, and seemed to get it somewhat. He'd have days when he'd be really into the "big brother" book we got, and other days when it was the last thing he wanted to read.
And then I was in the hospital for two weeks before Bubba came. Still not talking a lot at 23 months, Jordan just knew Mom was gong with Bubba and that Bubba was inside my stomach. He had a great time with Grandma while Daddy worked and then... Bubba was here and Mom was back. While Bubba was in the NICU for a month, Jordan still just heard about Bubba, would say "I love you Bubba" as we drove by the hospital, and finally... after almost forever, he got to meet Bubba through the looking glass of the NICU. And boy.. was he excited. And that excitement for his baby brother... maybe increased because of how long he was unable to see him and had heard of him, has only seemed to grow.
Sure he pushes the limits from time to time. Sure he doesn't understand why he can't just hold his baby brother whenever he wants. Sure he tries to roll Bubba over and gets put into time out. Sure he takes toys away from Bubba and makes him cry. But most of the time, he's just learning and it's pretty dang sweet to see him look out for his baby brother. Jordan will go grab a toy (albeit it a not so cool and lamer toy) for Bubba, will tell him his planes are not baby toys. Likewise, he will eat Bubba's snacks and say he wants some baby snacks too, but then tell me that avocado is Bubba's food, not his. He becomes really defensive anytime other people are around Bubba or other kids are trying to touch Bubba's toys. Bubba is for the most part, his and Mommy's and Daddy's and everyone else is okay touching him, unless he's sick or tired or hungry.... then nobody can touch Bubba!
I've been enjoying the perks of being able to witness their love for one another. Bubba LOVES watching Jordan, he is a pretty great eater and generally focused, but the moment Jordan finishes eating and asks to be excused, Jordan runs out of the kitchen in the morning leaving Bubba cranking his neck here and there in an effort to catch a glimpse of big brother running in the hallway. It's absolutely adorable. You can tell he's got an inner struggle of - stay and eat, see what big bro is doing. Bubba loves being with Jordan and if he's in the car without Jordan, he almost looks anxious until he can see Jordan sitting next to him, and then it's as if he's letting out a sigh of relief and then gives in and goes ahead and falls asleep. If he's awake, 90% of the time, his head is turned left to stare at Jordan.
Bubba had his 9 month appointment today, so Jordan got two lollipops and a sheet of four Superman stickers that he has transferred to his PJs to sleep with - it was a great day for Jordan! But it was also so so cute to see Jordan express concern for his baby brother - first while he was getting his shots, telling him "don't be scared Bubba" and "you'll feel better after" and then in the radiology room where he shouted from the next room (where the technician asked Jordan to sit and gave him a lollipop to help occupy him), "it's okay Bubba, don't be scared" (Jordan was just in the x-ray room over Christmas so he might have recalled Andy saying that to him).
These two are (hopefully) going to be the best of friends!