“Friends come and go but family is for life.”
Growing up in a family with 4 kids there was never a dull moment. I was the middle sister of 3 and I have an older brother. We lived in the country so we were our own playmates. My poor brother!! Life often takes you in different directions when you get older but the memories of your childhood bring you back to a time only you and your siblings can share and appreciate. We are the only ones who remember the fun Friday nights at the drive-in movie, the story behind the fish sandwiches, the family vacation when mom’s canned goods flew off the top of the car and why we had canned goods on the top of the car to start with. Your memories of these events are the glue that bonds you ! “Your siblings are the only people in the world who know what it’s like to have been brought up the way you were. “
My children were 5 years apart. There are pros and cons to all sibling age dynamics, each with its own set of challenges. I loved having individual time with each child and they were a great age when the new additions to our family arrived. They were a huge help and eager to be a part of caring for their new sibling. One thing I worried about was that the age gap might create a distance between them as they got older. Especially the 10 years and gender difference between my eldest and youngest. Time has shown me that my worry was unfounded as I watch the 3 of them as adults. I love listening to their conversations while they share their stories. I have joy in my heart knowing they will be friends for a lifetime and that they will always have each other to lean on.
As I watch my 2 grandchildren, I don’t worry at all. Well, not about thIs anyway! Maybe because they are closer in age or maybe because I see how close they are and I feel that connection will never be lost. They have their moments, that is for sure. It wouldn’t be normal if they didn’t. They are best of friends. They enjoy doing things together and watch out for each other. My daughter and her husband make sure their kids share new adventures as a family, forming memories that only they will have together. They introduce them to group experiences, while at the same time, encourage their individuality. Never comparing them but teaching them to appreciate their differences. Family vacations are a great way to encourage sibling bonding. Times together only they will share. They recently returned from a trip where a bear scratched a screen off their cabin window and tried to get in their car. WHAT??? That is one memory they won’t forget. There are some things you should just not share with Lala!! Enjoying the great outdoors by camping, hiking and biking can also be very fun and help to develop sibling closeness. In fact , anything you do as a family helps to strengthen that bond.
There are also many things you can do at home to create special family times together. Each weekend have one family member pick the activity. It could be a movie night, a game night or a story night. That person could be responsible for coming up with special snacks and drinks for the event. You may actually see some sibling rivalry show up for that. A little competition is good for you! It doesn’t matter what you do. If you are having fun, you are creating exactly what it takes to make sure your children are forever connected by their memories. As a mother and a grandmother it is one of the things that I would wish for every family.
“Give the ones you love wings to fly, roots to come back and reasons to stay.”