Sibling rivalry

We were chatting last night about sibling relationships and how unpredictable they are. We have probably had as many people tell us that 11 years apart (between LilZ and NikkiZ) is DREADFUL as we have told us it’s WONDERFUL. I don’t think there is any gender/age difference pattern between siblings that can predict how they’ll get along with 100% accuracy.

The only sibling I have is my brother. I am 2 1/2 years older than him and we got along GREAT growing up. I was always proud of him and wanted to show him off. I didn’t care if he hung out with my friends and I and we actually hung out together many times. I blame it on the circumstances we grew up in. First? Our parents were divorced. When you spend every other weekend changing houses, it makes things a lot more tolerable if you get along, because then no matter WHERE you are, there is someone to play with. Also? We were two catholic school kids (uniform and all) that went to a southern baptist daycare. We kinda stuck out a little bit and sometimes didn’t really have anyone to play with, so we would hang out together. And finally? My Dad’s house (where we were raised) wasn’t in your typical, “Kids on every block” kind of street, so we played with each other during afternoons and summers. Water fights with shampoo bottles and basketball games on the patio. We got along great.

(Don’t get me wrong, we had several of those “try to kill each other” incidents, but for the most part? We really liked each other)

But as adults? We love each other, respect each other, and admire each other, but we are about as different as two people can be. We have grown into very different adults with very different lives. He’s a TRIATHELETE for chrissakes. He’s training for an Ironman for FUN. Can you see the differences already? He has also been very mature about his money, his career and his relationships. I’ve had my impetuous moments with all three. He finds himself keeping in touch with his religious upbringing whereas I’m making payments on my fireside condo in hell (kidding! kinda.) And of course, there is always the difference that I’m ridiculously good looking and he’s a fat troll.

(Sorry, old sibling habits die hard. My first Christmas home from college he hung a sign up that said “Welcome Home Fat Girl.”)

It all boils down to my life being 100% better with the presence of my brother. No matter how we got along as kids, or as adults, I could not fathom what my life would have been like without him in it. I am thrilled that LilZ will be able to have the same gift in his life, whether he sees it now, or 10 years from now, I know he’ll see it eventually. He’s wanted a little brother or sister since he was in Kindergarten and I think I’m more excited about HIM holding his SISTER for the first time, than me holding my daughter.

Lets just hope they dont ever chase each other through the house with kitchen knives like my brother and I tended to do. It can create for messy afternoons.

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10 Responses

  1. Lisa says:

    My kids are 10 years apart and its been wonderful! They werent in diapers at the same time, didnt go through puberty at the same time,no fights over toys and they are not in college at the same time and the older one is handy for last minute babysitting. They are 19 and 9 and I wouldnt have it any other way!!

  2. JustLinda says:

    I agree – there is no predictability here. My two oldest are less than two years apart and fought like CATS until they no longer lived under the same roof (no, I didn’t kick either of them out – they grew up and went to college).

    There is 11 years between my 2nd and 3rd. They still manage to fight like they are the same age, somehow. hahah

    There is over 5 years between my 3rd and 4th and they play together beautifully and really seem to treasure the friendship.

    Hey, though – with a 11 year old boy and a baby girl, you WON’T have to worry about fighting over CLOTHES or make-up or boyfriends, huh? Always look on the bright side, right? ;)

  3. workinggirl says:

    Your brother sounds great….is he single!! :)

  4. Fraulein N says:

    My brother and I didn’t get along as kids, but I think we’re kind of growing into a relationship now. It’s nice. As excited as LilZ is about being a big brother, I’m sure his relationship with NikkiZ will be great.

  5. Zoe says:

    I have two older brothers who are 4 and 12 years older than me, so I can say from experience I get on MUCH better with the older brother. I mean, I love them both, but a few years ago the younger brother and I would have some pretty nasty fights. Basically he drove me batshit crazy sometimes. With LilZ, the age gap between him and NikkiZ is closer to mine and my eldest brother, so I imagine the relationship will be a little more peaceful :)

  6. loon says:

    “… and he’s a fat troll.” hehehe. some old siblings habits *do* die hard. :) thanks for the laugh.

  7. Erin says:

    My little brother and I are ten years apart… as my mother will attest, it didn’t stop the sibling rivalry any. It has its pros and its cons. :) The pros were mostly for my mom who had a ten-year-old around to help change diapers and give bottles. ;) It’s neat having a brother that much younger than myself. Makes for interesting conversation. And for him? He thought it was way cool that he because an uncle when he was 17. :D

  8. Erin says:

    “became” an uncle… sorry, typo! :)

  9. Heather says:

    Oh man…my three sisters drive me up.the.wall. But I wouldn’t trade them in for the world. :-)

  10. Jerri Ann says:

    I am doing a paper on the Catholic religion. Can I “interview” you?

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