I was just over two years old when I received the toy that I loved the very most. It came wrapped in a soft white cloth with blue strips. I was told to sit down and carefully hold out my arms. The moment the warm bundle was lowered into my arms, and I peeked into the folds of that blanket, all of those nurturing emotions I had lavished on my baby dolls surged into something so much more, and I fell deeply in love with my baby brother.
We were each other’s constant companions and did everything together. Of course, there were disagreements, he didn’t always believe that he should follow my rulings, but he eventually accepted the fact that he actually did. As I started to enter my pre-teen years, I came to the conclusion that having a Baby Brother underfoot all the time was over-rated. He wanted to hang out with me even when my friends came over. It was so uncool to have a pesty little brother hanging around.
Eventually the day came when my Baby Brother had grown bigger and taller than me. The playing field was more equal and I found that I had to be a little bit nicer to him before he realized that he might have the upper hand should things get physical. (Not that I had ever, ever, ever resorted to pushing the little pest around a bit when he needed it.)
Many years have passed since that day he was gently lowered into my arms. We are no longer constant companions as we live on opposite sides of the country and are both busy raising our families. He calls me frequently, usually on the way to work sites when he has a long drive. I try to fly out to see him and my parents once or twice a year. I’m always happy to give my towering Baby Brother a hug…and perhaps a whispered reminder that he’s my brother and I’m still the one in charge of things.