My oldest grandson, Dylan, is away at college and way too grown up to have me for a baby sitter anymore. I still have the pleasure of ‘sitting’ (although there isn’t too much of that) with my two energetic younger grandsons!
Most of us were taught to get along with our siblings as we were growing up. This meant sharing, compromising and even offering forced hugs once in a while to ‘seal the deal’ on settling bitter sibling squabbles. Living in close quarters with brothers and sisters can often create friction in a household, especially when there is a considerable age difference between siblings. When the now three year old Gage was born, his big brother Gunnar, then 6, loved to kiss his younger brother and hold his tiny hands. As Gage has grown, he is still protected and loved by his big brother ‘Bubba’. However, Gunnar’s fascination of playing with his younger sibling has waned somewhat since their interests are on different developmental levels. The one thing ‘Bubba’ does so enjoy is aggravating his little brother to the max!
Gage has a fascination with Thomas the Train and all of Thomas’ friends. Thusly there is an elaborate train track set up in the family room devoted to Gage’s current passion. Gunnar thrills in the action of destroying parts of the train track creating unholy shrills from Gage! Consequently I step in and rebuild the track and redirect big brother. Redirecting often means Gunnar goes to his room and plays a game on his own with the door closed….and locked! The locked door soon creates body slams and fist banging by Gage wanting to invade his brother’s domain. This time it is Gunnar on the defense declaring that there is no refuge from the tiny terror! You know the feeling that permeates your being when someone runs their fingernails across a chalkboard……yep that’s right, I’m there!! At this point, I declare a truce and we break for ‘snack time’. Usually, we sit on the kitchen floor and have a beverage, chips or fruit and visit quietly …even if ever so briefly. In that moment I see two young brothers communing peacefully with each other and united in brotherly love.
Gunnar is a very bright young man at age 9, makes good grades and is now considering ‘career’ choices as he looks into his future. His Aunt Dana recently asked what he would like to be when he grows up. His response was fairly swift in answering a ‘Realtor’ which is a noble profession that his Dad and his Nana share, or a ‘Doctor’, he added……….. (This is his maternal Granddad’s profession). I didn’t flinch and just suggested he could be a Doctor who owns a lot of real estate! That was just fine with him! So, you see, you never know what influence you may have on the little people around you as they are soaking in life on their journey to adulthood. I am constantly challenged to be the best possible Nana and hopefully I will leave a positive mark on ‘My Three Grandsons.’

Live and Love well!

Linda Seifert