Since my 6 year old is on a 3 week break from school, my cousin thought it would be a good idea to "borrow" him and keep him busy for 4 days. So my Aunt brought my son down to Manila to stay with my cousin.
What happened is for my cousin to tell.
It was the first time in their entire lives that my 6 year old would be separated from his 2 year old brother for that long. I thought it wouldn't make such a big difference but boy it did.
My 6 year old left on the midnight bus trip so the next day, my 2 year old was surprised to see that his older brother was no longer in their room. He went around the house looking for him saying, "Josh? Josh! Josh?! Weh A Yooo?" while looking in the drawers. So I asked him, "Where did Josh go?" Lifting his shoulders he answered "Don Know." Used to playing / imitating / pestering / bickering / competing with his older brother, my 2 year old had to adjust to life at its simplest. Playing alone with no one to fight over toys with. And for the first time, I didn't hear any complaining around the house.
Over the weekend, we took advantage of taking our 2 year old out-- just him. To our surprise, he was the most behaved little angel in the whole wide universe. I didn't have to remind him to keep still in the car nor did I have to keep telling him not to touch this and that. He just sat there until we got to where we were going. We were amazed. And then come lunch time at a restaurant (this is a time I ALWAYS dread -- saving it for another post), he sat on his high chair and patiently waited for the food to be served (!). How great is that?! That NEVER happens when his big brother is around. And when the food came, I prepared a small portion on his plate and he finished it without any dilly-dallying. My husband kept asking if there was anything wrong with him. We couldn't help compare how our 2 year old was being so much like our 6 year old when he was the same age.
I thought to myself, having another child to interact with definitely affects the behavior of another. Since my 2 year old is in the monkey see - monkey do stage, whatever his 6 year old brother does, he thinks he can do --even better. So there are constant bumps and bruises caused by climbing and running and jumping. But this time, my 2 year old was left to interact with adults.
Although we were amazed / amused and happy, we noticed how much my 2 year old was yearning for his brother. My 6 year old came home the following Monday and I could tell how much they missed each other.
The moment he stepped in the door, they started to quarrel over a toy.
Now everything is back to normal.