What is a Brother?

Brothers.

Two years apart. Almost to the day.

One loves Legos and Mindcraft and hockey. The other one loves being tickled, old train magazines, and game shows.

One never stops talking and asks endless questions that sometimes make me laugh and other times drive me up a wall.

The other one is more choosy about what he communicates. He makes us work for it. But when he does, mostly it’s mom, snack, home and yes and no. And cookie. And most recently Starbucks.

I thought they would be best friends. Inseparable. I pictured them playing and going everywhere together.

What we picture doesn’t always happen. We all know that.

For a lot of years they lived on two entirely different planets, never acknowledging each other. Like ships in the night. I myself felt torn as their mom. A foot in each world, wondering where I felt most comfortable. And missing the other at times.

Then we went through the hard years. The ones I don’t talk about publicly. The younger brother asking questions of why. There was fear and worry. And so much misunderstanding. We had to make safety plans for our home, for the other brothers. I still struggle to talk about it. But we made it through. We all did. But not without our own scars.

I get asked daily what their relationship is like today. Other parents want to know. Mostly ones with little children who want hope.

I want to tell them that they play endlessly together, that their relationship has blossomed into what we all hoped it would be.

I can’t. Not yet. But here is what I will tell you.

It’s getting better. There is a seed. And it’s growing. We water it daily. We encourage when when we can. We push and pull and let life happen in an organic way. And we bring them into each others world every chance that we get.

Last night Sawyer wanted to go to the fish store. We told him probably not…that Cooper seemed tired. We were all tired. So he did what any brother would do. He asked his brother if he wanted to go to the fishing store.

When Cooper signed ‘yes’ Sawyer couldn’t contain his excitement. He hugged and kissed him in the most magical way.

Moms and dads, have hope. That’s all I can say. And open your eyes to the beauty that can emerge when we let go of our expectations.

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Finding Cooper’s Voice is a safe, humorous, caring and honest place where you can celebrate the unique challenges of parenting a special needs child. Because you’re never alone in the struggles you face. And once you find your people, your allies, your village….all the challenges and struggles will seem just a little bit easier. Welcome to our journey. You can also follow us on Facebook, subscribe for exclusive videos, and subscribe to our newsletter.

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Finding Cooper's Voice is a safe, humorous, caring and honest place where you can celebrate the unique challenges of parenting a special needs child. Because you're never alone in the struggles you face. And once you find your people, your allies, your village....all the challenges and struggles will seem just a little bit easier. Welcome to my page!

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