We had another successful night! Ellie is pretty much up at one and four. The 1:00 feeding is rough because she doesn't poop, so her belly hurts. The good news is that once she goes potty, she falls right back to sleep! We are so grateful for the Lord's provision in this area...a good sleeper is such a blessing!!
Another blessing as a parent is the opportunity to witness the growing bond of love and friendship between siblings. Nothing has brought me more joy these past few days than the tender moments of affection shared between Eli and Eli. After all, siblings are your very first friends in life.
Of course those of us with brothers and/or sisters know the cold, hard truth too. Siblings make sure you know basic life survival skills. For example, they teach you how to share...EVERYTHING...this includes underwear in a pinch. They teach you how to pick a fight and then shift the blame to an innocent party. They also make sure to know your every pet peeve; then they find ways to prey on your weaknesses at the most inopportune times - like in the car or at church.
Siblings are also the first to tattle on you. Initially, they tell when you steal a toy, break a rule or even look or breathe in their direction. Eventually, all parties mature and that tattling gives way to blackmail. Now your beloved siblings no longer run straight to Mom and Dad to spill the beans about your misdeeds. Instead, they collect retaliation against you and threaten to tell the parentals if you don't become their life long slaves.
Then something magical happens as you and your siblings start to leave the nest. It's about this time that you realize your brother and sister may act like you're the scum of the earth, but they would also fight at the drop of a hat to defend your honor. And so, this rivalry turns to friendship. After all, you have survived family vacations in the old mini-van, summer breaks running through the fields, and a billion family "meetings." Not to mention, you share a lifetime a secrets because despite your best attempts at blackmail, your siblings always called your bluff.
And so you move through life first as friends, then as enemies, and now as family. You talk on the phone without being made to get along, and you actually like it! You stand beside your siblings on their wedding days, and they drive two hundred miles one way to spend a few hours with your newest additions and precious babies.
That's when you start to pray that you own children will know this greatest of gifts. You realize that your anxiety over how your oldest will handle this life change was nothing short of crazy. That's because as you sit in a room surrounded by the laughter of your siblings, your family - you know that this is the beginning of a great journey of friendship between your two children.
So today I pray for these two babies of mine. May their journey be filled with precious memories of sharing not just toys, but a lifetime of love. May they look back on the moments of tattling and blackmail only to realize that they always had each other's backs. May they one day transition from sitting beside one another out of duty to proudly standing together on the most blessed of days - their wedding days. May the bond of my babies far surpass our brief season as a family under one roof, because one day Eric and I will no longer walk this Earth, but the bond of friendship between Ellie and Eli will last a lifetime keeping them warm on the bleakest of nights.
May they know the same bond I have been blessed to share with my own siblings -Amy & Clay.