When I brought the ball of chub we now call Leyna home from the hospital, Kendall showed mild interest. For the past 2-ish years, they’ve mostly peacefully coexisted, but never to the point where it’s been beneficial to me to have 2 of them.
You know what I’m saying? Like, when people are all, “It’s so great having 2 because they keep each other entertained!” That hasn’t been my reality. At all.
I haven’t been able to leave the two of them alone in the same room, really, for fear Kendall would accidentally hurt Leyna. He means well, but he’s never quite grasped the whole “be gentle, she’s not a punching bag” concept. Not that he ever actually meant to punch her (except that one time…), but I think he’s mainly thought of her as an inanimate object most of her life.
Until she got real- real big, real bossy, real talkative (and tattle-y), and real tough. This girl knows how to keep up with big brother, AND how to keep him in line. And I think that has finally put them on a somewhat level playing field.
Suddenly, like within the last week, they are magically friends. They played together the majority of the day today, saying things to each other like, “Wayne-a, come on! Let’s go play beach. I’ll show you how to get there! We have to take the elevator.” (Which is, obviously, our linen closet.) And then I’d hear, “Wook at me, Ken-dow! Wook at me!” from Leyna as she climbed to the top of the slide, eager to show off and please big brother.
Granted, we’re talking “friends” in the sibling sense, so of course there was our fair share of, “Mo-OOOMMM!” followed by your typical tattle, but I gave no cares! Because they were playing! Together! While I watched TV and drank coffee! And then I cleaned the house!
And for once I wasn’t feeling guilty about not planning a Monday play date or taking them on an outing so they could “socialize.” It was lovely. A day I’ve longed for since I became a parent.
Kendall was always so high-needs, and I wound up catering to that, creating (or responding to?) a kid who needs to be entertained by someone else 24/7. Meanwhile, I learned to ignore Leyna a little more, and she’s GLORIOUS at independent play.
Note (especially for 1st time parents): IGNORE YOUR KIDS MORE. YOU WILL THANK ME.
Finally, FINALLY they can play independently together.