Sibling Rivalry

"I'm smiling, are you?"

“I’m smiling, are you?”

My two youngest children are fierce competitors. I mean if they were in a World Cup match, one would be Argentina and the other England.

Or just about.

Their field of play is mostly who gets somewhere first, in particular to the car.

My eight-year-old son generally wins the race and declares it with a triumphant yell of “First!” That sets off a loud protest from his five-year-old sister and then an argument with her brother followed by a long sulk when she realizes that there’s no way to convince anybody that she won even though she came in second.

Today, however, the youngest said she wasn’t having any more of this racing lark.

“I’m not racing,” she said as we walked out of the house to get in the car to go to school.

This baffled her brother, but he played along.

“It’s not a race,” she said again before proceeding to stroll to the car with her hands stuffed in her pockets. She stopped to look up at the blue sky and wave to a neighbor before continuing her saunter and trying to let out an attempt at a whistle.

I opened the car door and that’s when the youngest stepped into action. With a quick jump she hurled her whole body into her seat as her brother watched on, slower to get into gear – and slower to get his butt in his seat.

The youngest sat down triumphantly and let out a gleeful yell of “First!”

That opened a litany of protests from her brother, but nothing could suppress the five-year-old’s broad smile.

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