Brotherly love has a large well of emotions. It’s a love of action, the entwining of two people with a deep, unbreakable bond. But like both boys individually, it’s a roller coaster of extremes.
Their mutual love is clear to me when Bronson and Oli giggle at each other from across the table. They kick their legs with a similar pattern and wave their arms with genuine joy.
When Bronson fetches Oli a snowboard guy or a car to play along side of him, I know they’re friends for life.
When Oli cheers for Bronson while he bats and Bronson cheers for Oli when he takes his first drink from a cup, I know they’ll support and encourage each other over the coming years.
When they erupt into shrieks and silliness as they chase each other (aka the backbreaking work of Ryan or I to make Oli “chase” Bronson), I know they’ll push each other to play harder, to run faster, to be sillier.
Though there’s no limits to their love, there are limits to their kindness.
When Bronson needed a tissue during tubby, he grabbed his brother’s hand to wipe away the snot. Apparently, Bronson knows no limits on a helping hand.
Bronson often takes toys away from Oli. To mask this problem, he orchestrates a trade. Until recently this worked seamlessly with his unknowing brother, but now Oli fights back and tries to return the favor when he can, often ramming Bronson with his walker to even the playing field.
But when another boy took a toy from Oli at the library, it was Bronson who grabbed it back and said (or rather shouted), “No! That’s Oli’s!”
Brotherly love is kisses and laughter, running and tackling, taking and giving, being and becoming. They share genetics and environment. They share a room. They share interests and toys.
And like all genuine and lasting love, they share life.