Cole has started talking about his future. His current plans include leaving us after high school. Like, really leaving. And we'll encourage him to chase his dreams, and be all that he can be (ahem. subtle hint.). Whatever he decides. But then, tonight, I had this realization: His leaving is going to crush Matthew. It is going to be very, very hard for him.
They have become such good friends. If you walk into my house at any given time, you might see Cole doing arm curls with Matthew in his arms (he calls it his Home Gym). You will see them wrestling (and the baby freaking out because she hates rough play). You will see them on the trampoline. And however you find them, you will find Matthew in fits of hysterics. He's a stoic kid, primarily. But he thinks his big brother is HILARIOUS.
I was thinking of it through Matthew's eyes. You're eight years old. Your big brother is 16, has muscles, sometimes has girls over, and he burps super loud. He comes up with ridiculous nicknames for you, and regularly calls you "sweetheart," and refers to you and your little brother as "ladies." "Good night, ladies," he'll say to them, "Sleep well!" You just might have a love affair with your ever-teasing big brother.
I guess this realization, while difficult, might be preparing me too. I know how fast the next two years will go. I know the changes we'll go through during them. I know that we have to start preparing for the bird to leave the nest. Change is inevitable. It's exciting. It's hard. Pulling deep into this mother's heart to remember that they'll be brothers first, and brothers forever.