The following photo appeared on my “On This Day” Facebook App this week:
This was the second time that Freyja had met her new sister, the first time being in hospital. She was so excited to have a little sister. The great big grin that she has on her face here says it all really. For those first few months the only problems with having two were just the logistics of caring for both a tiny baby and a toddler, both with different needs. There was no sibling rivalry. Freyja would happily gaze at her little sister and play with her when she was in her bouncing chair or in her baby gym.
Things were going really smoothly, until Emily started crawling when she would make a beeline for Freyja’s toys. To Freyja’s credit, she was always very good about it, just not very happy about it. When Emily was old enough to realise she could stand her ground she would try to take things off her big sister – sometimes scratching, pulling hair and biting to get her own way. The pair of them would fight over cuddles with me, with Emily usually trying to push her big sister away from me.
However, now Emily can talk we have the arguments and winding each other up. There are frequent cries of “Mine!” from both girls and Emily’s favourite is “Share!” which basically means that she wants whatever Freyja is playing with. Emily knows how to wind her big sister up. Our drive back from nursery will usually involve Freyja protesting that Emily is doing any of the following things:
- doing an angry face
- singing when Freyja doesn’t want her to be singing
- saying “…..” (which is usually some incoherent gobbledegook)
I should add that for the majority of the time, they are the sweetest sisters. Emily shouting “Frair” and smiling and waving at her big sister is brilliant, and the cuddles and kisses they give each other at bed time makes me forget any of the troubles we have had during the day. There are many little moments that surprise me, with gestures that show just how much they love each other; sharing a snack, a story, a cuddle or an impromptu kiss. Freyja is still very proud of her little sister and usually asks about seeing Emily once she has woken up in the morning. They are also starting to play together more and more as well.
Being a sibling is tough. It has to be hard to have someone suddenly arrive in your life, forever who will compete with you for your parents’ attention – and I should know as I had two little sisters! It is hardly surprising that there will be some sibling rivalry and falling outs, but I am glad they have each other. They should be a part of each other’s lives for far longer than any other person will be. They will be there for each other through heartaches and sadness and be able to share in each other’s happiness.