I have a little brother whom I love dearly. I am also married to a little brother and I’m parenting a little brother. As I’ve been raising a little brother over the past four years, I’ve come to understand my own brother and my husband a little bit better. I’ve also come to realize that little brothers are some of the most loving, annoying, precious, obnoxious, and funniest people on the planet. I also inadvertently discovered the perfect way to pay your own little brother back for his childhood obnoxiousness. Too bad I had to wait until I was 33, but it was worth it.
They annoy you because….they love you??
There has been a scene that has played out in our house every single day that Little Miss has gone to kindergarten. T-Rex gives her big hugs and kisses when she gets on the bus, and then he counts down the hours until she gets home. “Are we having lunch with sissy today? Are we going for recess today? Are we helping in computer lab today?” If the answer(s) is no, I get a big, “AWWW.” He races out to the door to the bus stop to greet her, races home, and when he enters that door, it’s like something snaps. He turns into Mr. Annoying. He literally pokes her, pushes all her buttons, takes her toys, and in general drives us all crazy until he ends up in time out. Every. Single. Day. Apparently my husband did the exact same thing to his sister when she went to kindergarten. I was exasperated after one recent episode when my husband informed me, “It’s just because he loves her so much. He has all this pent up energy, and he’s so excited to have her home, he just doesn’t know what to do with it.” Uh-huh. So there you have it. Your little brother drove you crazy because he loved you so much.
Quick-witted, random humor to last a lifetime
Apparently little brothers learn at a very early age that the way to get attention and/or a word in edgewise is to be as random as possible. And apparently parents encourage this behavior by laughing hysterically at the randomness. Case in point: On a recent drive home one evening, Little Miss Sunshine was rambling on and on about the moon. “Why is the moon so foggy? Why is it so fuzzy behind all the clouds? It’s a crescent moon, but it’s so foggy. Why is it foggy?” When T-Rex very loudly and suddenly interrupted her with, “THE MOON IS EVIL!!! YOU CAN’T SEE THE MOON!!!!” The Narrator and I played the role of parents laughing til tears rolled down our cheeks. Little Miss replied, “The moon isn’t evil, and I can too see it, it’s right behind those clouds.” T-Rex continued his rant, “NO, THE MOON IS EEEEEEVVIIIILLL!!!!” Like I said. Completely random and hilarious.
Apparently the hilarious, random humor is something that sticks with them the rest of their lives. On Christmas Eve, my brother, his wife, my Mom, Dad, and I sat in the living room stuffing stockings and telling stories until midnight. My sister-in-law is a nurse and began to list off the doctors that she trusts in their small town. One on her “list” was a lung doctor whose last name sounds like “Kootchie-Pootie.” I kid you not. In our tired, slap-happy state, that name really struck my funny bone and I couldn’t stop laughing. For some reason, I started singing to the tune of “Rubber Ducky”… “Kootchie-Pootie, you’re the one” and before I could finish my line, my brother filled in with, “You’ll be the one to fix my lung!” Yeah. You had to be there. I cried laughing.
How to pay him back for his little brother-ness
Little Miss Sunshine was in a talkative mood on her birthday and she wanted to call people. So they could sing to her. And tell her happy birthday. And how wonderful she is. After we called both sets of obliging grandparents, she wanted to know who else would still be awake that she could call. I knew my brother would still be up. T-Rex was getting annoyed that he was being left out of the action attention and was near meltdown. So I told Little Miss when she was done talking to let T-Rex talk. I then dialed my brother’s number and handed the phone to my very chatty six-year old. I sat nearby, laughing and laughing for the next TWENTY-FIVE minutes while my two overly wound-up, extremely talkative kids talked my brother’s ear off.
Finally they decided they were done talking and handed the phone to me. When I said a cheery “Hello!!” I heard, “FINALLY!! AN ADULT!!” Oh sweet victory. He said that he had forgotten to wish Little Miss happy birthday and “I was trying to get T-Rex to hand the phone back to her so I could tell her Happy Birthday, but he was being a little punk.” Oh so very, very worth the wait.I love you bro, really, I do 🙂
So if you have a little brother, give him a big bear hug today. And then poke him in the ribs. Or if he’s not around, have your kids give him a call and then rescue him and tell him you love him. Or if you don’t have one, but are married to one or are raising one, give them a big kiss and squeeze. Or if you don’t have a little brother in your life, you can just live vicariously through the 3 in my life.