When I picked Kate up from school today and told her that Becca's baby brother had been born, she said, "We should call Miss Nancy!"
To congratulate her, I guess?
"We should call Nancy to tell her that Becca's baby brother was born!"
I think she knows that, Kate, given she got cut open to get him out. But in any case, I tried to interview Kate about the ins and outs of being a big sister. Kate was much more interested in using a tape measure to measure her arms, Claire's wrists, and my behind (thanks, Kate) so I got some random answers like, "um, vacation Bible school?"
Here are the tips we did glean:
What should Becca do to be a really good big sister?
"Play with him. And with me. Claire can play with Becca's brother and Becca can play with me!"
What should she do when the baby is crying?
"She should say, 'Baby, don't cry!' And giggle with him."
When the baby starts crawling around and getting into her stuff, what should she do?
"She should say, 'No, brother!' and take it out of his hand."
What's the best part about being a big sister?
"Getting my pencil box."
No, that's not a gift she got when Claire was born; it was an item we picked up on the way home today to hold the many markers we've accumulated. What can I say? She's three and she lives in the moment.
If we quizzed Kate about the day to day realities of being a big sister, her response might have included tips on hitting, pushing, and body slamming younger siblings. And a fun game where Kate runs to one side of the room so Claire will chase her in her most determined crawl—then when Claire is halfway there, she runs back to the other side of the room, leaving Claire perplexed but good naturedly doing an about face to follow Big Sister again.
I'm comforted by the notion that while big siblings may push little siblings around, they also defend them like none other if anyone else dares pick on the little sib. As an only child, I found this frustrating and hypocritical when I tried to join friends in the teasing of their little siblings, only to be rebuked. But seeing my own kids (and being assured by Matt, who has a little brother of his own) I know it's just the way of sibling love.
Congrats, Big Sister Becca, and welcome Sweet Baby James. Kate and Claire can't wait to meet you!