Into most little lives, a sibling must enter. Sometimes the baby is born into a family with other children, and so they just seem like a normal part of life, but sometimes as can be the case with the oldest child, that new little sibling is a bit of a culture shock. Still, most of the time the older child is very excited about this new little playmate, but sooner or later it occurs to the older child that this new little baby sure gets a lot of attention, or cries a lot, or is…basically very needy. That is the point when they become just a little bit disenchanted with this new little person, and they start to wonder why their parents decided to get this kid anyway. And sometimes they are very jealous of this new sibling, and really want the baby to be sent back. Oh they may still love them sometimes, but they sure can be annoying, and they sure take up a lot of Mommy’s and Daddy’s time. Time that used to be exclusively the older child’s time, and now must be shared.
For my niece Chantel Masterson Balcerzak, who really did love her sister, Toni Masterson Chase, and who I don’t really think ever felt a lot of resentment, I suppose it was really just a matter of letting everyone know that she was still there. Chantel was always a bit of a Diva, and so she liked her fair share of attention. She liked being the big sister, and helping her mom with the kids who came along after her, but just remember that she was still there, and she was after all…cute too. Of course, it wasn’t like anyone was going to forget that, because after all…Chantel was the first grandchild and the first niece, and we were all excited to have her here. Nevertheless, I suppose that when Toni came along, there was a bit of attention being paid to the new baby. So, our Chantel decided that it was time to remind us that she was the baby too.
That said, one day, Chantel saw Toni’s empty baby carrier, and decided that she would just show us that she still fit the part of baby pretty well. So, she proceeded to plop down in the baby carrier, get her self situated in a very comfortable position, and flash that cute little smile of hers, as if to say, “I’n da baby too!!” Chantel was never a very big girl…in fact, fully grown, she is only 4’10”, so she really could fit in that baby carrier at two years old. I guess she proved her point. She could still play the part of a baby. Still, as the Diva part of Chantel continued to grow, she really didn’t want to take Toni’s place for very long, and as we all know, being the baby really can be kind of boring, especially when they are at the age of doing a lot of sleeping. That part didn’t interest Chantel very much at all. She was always a busy little girl, who had a lot of living to do. Sleeping was overrated. In the end, she opted for being the big sister over being the baby.
Ours was a family of girls…5 of them to be exact. I have no brothers, just 4 sisters. Our family stayed that way until I was 18 years old, when my sister, Cheryl had her son, Robert Allen…or Robbie as he would be dubbed, since his dad was Rob. Robbie has yet to completely outgrow that name, and he is 38 years old…as of today.
Robbie was…to put it mildly…a shock to our systems. Cheryl’s first 2 children were girls too, and we were just used to how girls did things. Robbie remained the only boy born in our family for the next 12 years, and he was definitely a trial to his Aunt Caryn, who had 2 girls and no boys. In fact, I spent much of the next approximately 18 years thinking he was insane. By that time, we had 3 more boys in the family, and they were old enough to let me know that Robbie was just acting like any other boy.
Boys are quite different from girls as I’m sure many of you know. They enjoy the whole shock factor thing, and love to see if they can get a rise out of those around them, especially the women. The teasing and annoying things boys do to see if it will bug you, were especially annoying to me, as the mother of 2 girly girls.
Robbie remained insane…in at least some capacity until I ended up with 3 grandsons, and only 1 granddaughter. Boy, were those boys a culture shock to me. Up until they came along and grew a little, I secretly thought it was just other peoples’ boys who were insane, but my own grandsons made it really clear that all boys are pretty much the same.
These days, there is little that boys can do that shocks or surprises me. I fully understand that the way they act is just common to the male species. As the years have gone by, I have come to see Robbie, and my other nephews, in a different light…and I really like them, not just love them because they are nephews. Once you have been around boys for a while, you have a different perspective. So, happy birthday Robbie!!I’m sure you will be happy to know that I no longer think you are insane!! We love you very much!!