Friday, January 16, 2015

The Wonderful World of Siblings

I am an only child.  I am also the oldest, the youngest, and smack dab in the middle as one of six.  I will wait while that sinks in for a bit.  You are probably thinking that I have lost my ever-lovin' mind.  You are probably right, but on this topic, I am confident of my "non-place" in the sibling hierarchy.  Psychologist Dr. Kevin Leman (author of, The Birth Order Book) would have a field day with me.

Due to my unconventional and sometimes lonely childhood (I have two half brothers, two step-brothers, and a half sister; none of which I lived with full time while growing up), I always dreamed of having a gaggle of kids.  Five was the number I set my heart on at the ripe old age of nine, to be exact.  I never wanted my children to lack a playmate, best friend, or confidant.  I imagined their days spent inventing silly secret languages, playing with dolls, trucks, mud, bats and balls, the gambit.  My daughters would be bffs.  My sons would fight and slay dragons to defend their sisters' honor and integrity, all while never failing the brotherhood code of ethics.  It was all very neat and clean; quite idealistic.  And then the precious little darlings were born.

Initially all was going just swimmingly.  K.Z. adored his brand new sister and wanted to constantly play with her.  When little Xena was 21 months old, our third child C'sa came on the scene.  Still pretty copacetic.  Even when we started to foster our little guys, all was well.

And then... puberty.

I am not ignorant to this strange phenomenon.  I am pretty sure I only survived it by the skin of my teeth, and the fact that I had younger and cuter siblings to soften the blow of my hormone induced teenage psychosis.  But simply conquering puberty in one's own life can never really prepare you for the day when you watch your own beloved cutie pies morph into the wretched heathens they will become.  It goes from Mr. Roger's Neighborhood right to Lord of the Flies, in the blink of an eye.  And they start to get snarky with one another.  And fight.  And hate one another.  And the silly secret language of the cute days is replaced with what can only be described as a demon possessed Linda Blair like presence from The Exorcist.  My dream world of hearts and roses crashed and burned.

Now I do understand that the prefrontal cortex in the strange teen species does not develop fully until somewhere in their early twenties, but there are days I swear there must be tumbleweeds and crickets chirping in the space where all that good adult brain will someday form.  And frankly, it baffles me.  There are GREAT days with these offspring of mine and I do generally like them, but I miss those sweet babies, and look forward to the cool creatures that will emerge from these teen bodies.  That is if I actually survive it (if they survive it).  Do they make "Teen Survival Kits"?

Someone send chocolate. It's gonna be a long few years coming.


Jeannene Mitchell said...

Grandchildren are the reward you get for not killing your teenagers.

Anonymous said...

And I thought that I was the only one.

Aduladi' said...

You are NOT alone! But we will get through it. :-)

Dale Cupo said...

As I begin ever so slowly to start to emerge on the other side of "the Teen Years" with 2 out of 3, i want to say there is some hope but keep getting on your knees.

Denys aka Mommy said...

There are tumbleweeds and crickets in the brains here too and my parenting by sarcasm at times doesn't help :-) I am forever trying to parent with patience and not force and it is hard.

Lynne said...

This is stellar writing. Clear, to the point, funny and just enough to make us interested and want more but you stop and make us eager. Awesome. You have put into words the majority of our sentiments. Wow

Aduladi' said...

<3 Lynne! :-)