Riverson has never known life without a sibling. Langston was only 16 months old when Riverson was born and I bet, by now, he probably doesn’t even remember what his life was like without him.
They’ve been brothers for 2 years and 3 months, but I think they’ve been best friends for at least a year now. Some days they have a love/hate relationship, when they are whacking each other on the head or body, and some days they just want to play together all. day. long.
On Thursdays, Langston goes to school from 9 to noon and Riverson is home with Brantley and me. By 9:15 on most Thursdays, Riverson is already saying, “Mommy, you go get Langston?” This continues for the remainder of our three hours without Langston.
He misses him. He doesn’t know life without him.
At one of Langston’s soccer games this past fall, Jeff and I were watching them play together about 20 yards away from us. They were playing around a soccer goal on a neighboring field. A friend of Langston’s from his team came running over to the two of them saying, “Langston! Langston!”
Riverson jumped up, took two steps in front of Langston and put his hand up in the air saying, “No! No!” I’m not really sure what it meant, but Jeff is convinced it was his way of protecting Langston. It was like he was a little bodyguard.
Langston’s little friend made it over there without Riverson actually stopping him, but you could see the hesitation in Riverson’s face the whole time. Maybe it was jealousy. Who knows.
This weekend, I started to think maybe Jeff was right about that whole incident.
I took the kids to play at the mall play area and although the play area wasn’t packed, there were several kids playing there.
I took the boys’ shoes off, set them free to play, and settled in to a corner seat with Brantley on the floor in her car seat.
A few minutes later, a little girl not much younger than Riverson wandered up to me, after she had seen Brantley. She had an adorable smile on her face and kept creeping closer and closer to Brantley saying, “Baby. Baby.”
I smiled and nodded at her, hoping I wouldn’t have to tell her not to touch the baby. Thanks (I think) to Riverson, I didn’t have to.
He came rushing over and jumped between that little girl and his baby sister. He grabbed the handle on Brantley’s car seat, sat right down next to her and looked at the little girl, saying, “No. No.” He even put his hand up on the little girl, which I had to correct him for, and said, “My Brantley!”
He turned around, while still holding on to the car seat handle and put his head on his baby sister, making sure that little girl saw him. The little girl slowly walked off and he ran off to play, like his bodyguard job was finished.
I think it’s funny that even at just 2 years and 3 months of age, he’s already so incredibly attached to his siblings and fiercely protective.
As long as it doesn’t get out of hand, I think I like this little character trait about him.
Have you ever seen one of your kids be protective like this when it comes to a sibling?