Brothers… A cameraderie that cannot be broken?

Looking at my 20 week scan picture 6 years ago I knew I was staring at a little baby boy. I was so confident in my judgment that despite telling everyone I had only bought gender natural colours such as lemon, white and cream, I had secretly bought a little blue knitted cardigan and tucked it away keeping my hunch firmly to myself.

The saying “a mother knows” couldn’t have been more apt when on the 20th of March 2010  Isaac was born.

The same however, can’t be said of my second baby. I had absolutely no gut feelings, and felt a strong desire to find out so that I could not only prepare myself, but also my 5 year old son who was absolutely desperate by this point for a baby brother.

When, on the 6th of November James was born and we were finally able to bring him home, I have never looked more lovingly and passionately at anyone as I did at the  two little people curled up together on our bed – my sons. That is why  I have such an intense desire for them to get along, and love one another.

I am  one of three children, but the only girl, and I have always looked on with envy at the relationship lots of my friends and relatives have with their same sex siblings. There is no doubt that I love my brothers and we have a close bond however, our conversations rarely go deeper than what our children are getting up to, and our get togethers are usually masterminded by the close friendship I am lucky enough to have with my sister in laws.

When looking on twitter and Facebook I often see pictures of my friends out with their sister or bother and they look incredibly close, usually sharing a night out with the mutual friends they have or, even going on holiday together. It is this closeness that I sincerely hope my sons will have when they are older.
  Naturally, it  goes without question, that I hope my sons will one day find someone whom they want to marry and have children with, as well as having their own, close  group of friends. But,  I would always hope that as brothers they have common ground, and remain in regular contact, not merely meeting one another when a celebration such a a birthday or wedding dictates it.
Currently, my eldest son Isaac adores his younger brother. I see his smile curve even wider if his little brother accompanies me to pick him up from school. He always includes him in the conversations he is having with his friends, despite James’ input being  little more than a dribbly, babble. He seems exceptionally proud of him and happier than ever when he is in his company. So, I am anxious to know  in what circumstances and when can I expect this close relationship to lessen, and for siblings go their separate ways?
  As well  as the relationships that make me envious, there are also the opposite. We hear of siblings who simply have very little to talk about or, the relationship is so fraught and challenging that they can’t  be in the same room as each other. Sometimes, these occur in a crisis situation such as caring for an elderly parent, bickering over finances or opposing views of the world. Whatever the age of the children, I’m sure all mothers would contemplate this state of affairs with great sadness.

As always in our celebrity culture we hear of famous relationships that make us wish for the same family ethos and bond as those of Andy and Jamie murray, Gary and Phil Neville and of course princes William and Harry. However, these high profile siblings seem to have a close relationship that has been maintained by their love of sport or their Royal position.

 What however, if my sons or yours have few common interests and don’t have such a strong familial  connection? Don’t get me wrong, I’m not wanting my two boys to be joined at the hip and masterminding the next pioneering invention together, Wright brother style but, I do want them to be as happy as they are now together right through into adulthood and beyond.  I want they to have respect for each other, I want them to question anyone’s negative judgement of the other and as a consequence reinforce the positives, most of all I want them to meet up and go for a beer and have fun together.

I am so excited about the prospect of them both walking down the stairs on Christmas Day together when James is older. I can’t wait for James to be wearing an old hand-me-down jumper of Isaac’s and I even look forward to when they are plotting behind my back together about how they can sneak sweets before dinner. Because that is what brothers do, they stick together, watch each other’s backs, and have a camaraderie that will mature irrespectively of whatever paths they both take in their professional and personal lives.

As their mummy I will naturally encourage their close relationship, and hope that in the years to come they will be hatching plans to meet up, when they have children of their own for that sneaky beer or two!

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