Yes, the wonderful world of boys. Rough and tumble, trucks and dirt, loud noises and lots and lots of active play. Now, that our youngest boy, Joshua is more mobile (very fast crawler) we are noticing a bond between the two boys form.
Ethan has become very protective of his brother. He's always watching out for him. He loves to hold on to him, and is always willing to "carry" (drag him by the neck) him out of harm's way! Usually out of the bathroom or off the porch since those are off limits to Josh.
The other side of that of course is how quickly the tables can turn. One moment playing as nice as can be, and the next Josh has tire marks on his forehead because he dared to touch a tractor that Ethan had no intention of using until he saw Joshua go for it. Ah, siblings. Being the oldest of three girls myself, I can remember such incidents, but it's different with girls and boys. There's no pause, whining, or trying to figure out the best revenge. It's swift and harsh, whap upside the head, or a toy tossed directly at the offender. Boys don't think on it and sneak up on you later. They deal with head on, at that moment.
Which brings me to my next topic. Hugs. Ethan as I've mentioned before is in therapy for SI Dysfunction. His therapy is once a week, but for the past two weeks due to vacations and other doctor's appt.s we haven't been able to go...until today. It was so nice to touch base with Jessica, his therapist, again and make sure that my sanity is still in check. (For those of you keeping track, my sanity is never in check, but hey it's worth a try:)
One of his senses, tactile, is very much a problem for him. It's difficult for him to sort out what kinds of touch he likes. He's a very affectionate child, with me, but when it comes to others invading his personal space...lookout! It's like a cat being attacked. He becomes very defensive and irrational, and will lash out at the offender like he's the worst enemy in the world. It's in fact called sensory defensiveness, and it's the only way he knows how to deal with the stimulation at that moment. He does it most often with his dad and his best friend.
This is Ethan's bestest friend in the whole entire world! These two are inseperable, they've known each other since they were only a couple of months old. When they are together it's like a whirlwind of activity. Sometimes good other times not so much. Part of that is certainly just being boys. The other part is definitely from Ethan's inability to control himself.
Jamie is the best hugger in the world. He gives you a great big squeezy kind of hug, that lasts. Ethan can't take that kind of hug, most of the time. For him it needs to be on his time and under his conditions. As you can see in the picture, Jamie was able to sneak in a little arm wrap, but within seconds, Ethan was brushing it off. However, a little later, Ethan is the one trying to give Jamie the hug. Usually it's brief and not a hard squeeze.
So, I spoke to Jessica about this, and she suggested what Jamie's mom and I already established. (See sometimes we're pretty smart moms!!) That Jamie should ask Ethan if he can have a hug, and Ethan has the option of saying No Thankyou, or Yes, a quick hug. On the reverse side of that, Ethan also needs to ask Jamie too, because if he wants his space respected he needs to do the same thing. I know sounds like a whole lot of words for two little 3 1/2 yr. olds, but we've seen it work. Jamie asked Ethan if he could have a hug, and Ethan said No thankyou. About 2 minutes later Ethan asked Jamie for a quick hug, and they did. Jamie was excited to be able to hug his friend, and Ethan was happy that his space wasn't overly invaded. They were both smiling...success.
The good thing is it gives us some insight on to how Ethan interacts with Joshua sometimes. Josh is very snuggly and will crawl up to Ethan wanting to just be next to him, and Ethan will kick him or push him away. But if you give Ethan his space, he is the one going up to Josh and giving him love and affection.
So, now is when I tell you this is my life with boys. It's all I've known for 3 1/2 years, and it has been quite the learning curve. However, we had an ultrasound this past Friday, and found out that the little one we are expecting in January will be a little girl. We are so very excited. She will be a wonderful addition to our growing family. Mike and I can't keep the smiles off of our faces everytime we think about her.
Poor thing...she's in for it!! :) But hey, who knows, maybe she'll be the one to teach these boys a thing or two!