Lewis and Harry

I feel that I write a lot about the relationship between my girls, their bond as sisters is like nothing I have ever experienced, nor witnessed, before. With just fifteen months between them it was inevitable that their relationship would be very special, that they would be so much more than just sisters, they would be best friends too. But there are special bonds between each of my children, not just the girls, and the bond between my boys is equally as special in its own way.

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When Lewis was younger, if you asked him what he wanted more than anything else in the whole world, he would tell you, “A baby brother!”. And despite being just two years old when Joseph died, he felt the impact of his death massively, not just then but in all aspects of his life ever since. There were times, and still are, when he would ask me why he didn’t have a little brother of his own, why did Joseph have to die, why did he have nobody to play with when all of his friends had siblings to enjoy? And that used to break my heart, unable to give him the answers that he so desperately needed but equally, unable to give him the little brother that he wanted more than anything.

When my first marriage broke down and Lewis was thrust into a world of divorce, new houses and new people, at a time when I was struggling to hold it together, he missed the support of his brother, stood beside him, holding his hand. On holidays when it was just Lew and I, while the other kids played and Lewis sat beside me, too nervous to leave my side, he missed the companionship of a brother to run and play with, the best friend that he never had. As he grew and played with his power rangers, his wrestling figures, he missed the little brother who would have been the the red ranger to his black, the John Cena to his Undertaker. Kicking the football around the garden he missed the little brother stood in goals, sat beside him on the play station, lay beneath him on the bottom bunk, sharing secrets, talking about football, girls, how annoying we are as parents. For everything that I lost as a parent, he lost, perhaps even more so, as a brother.

And with the arrival of the girls Lewis was obviously over the moon, and yet I sensed his disappointment each time that his dream of getting a baby brother was still just that, a dream. I would see him watch the girls and the way that they were together and I knew exactly what he was thinking, “That should have been me and Joseph.”, written all over his face. Watching them grow, so close in age, just as he and Joseph should have been, was tough for me, but it was equally tough for Lewis. It still is.

So when we told him that finally, after ten long years, he would have a baby brother of his own, his response was not that of complete happiness and excitement as we had expected. After his initial reaction of, “Oh god are you pregnant again?! had worn off, he simply said, “But he will be just a baby and I will be ten…” and I knew then that his dream of having a little brother to share his life with would be a very different dream after all.

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And it turns out, the bond between Lewis and Harry is not the one that he would have shared with Joseph, all of those years ago, but it is something new, and very special, nonetheless. I think it is important that we acknowledge that, that we accept we cannot recreate the relationship they lost, nor would we want to. The bond between Lewis and Joseph will always remain and I am sure he will carry that throughout his life, the “Whys?” and “If only’s” in very much the same way that I do.

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From the minute that Harry was born I knew he would be different to the girls, that he would be just like Lewis, and he was. And seeing the boys together, Harry a miniature Lewis, is so lovely and exactly how I had hoped that it would be.

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Admittedly there are things that they cannot do together. As of yet, Harry hasn’t mastered the rules of football, nor the ability to play FIFA, ride a bike or follow the dramas of Hollyoaks. But he can play, he can laugh, kiss and cuddle. It is very much a learning curve for them both, discovering mutual ground, finding a way to build a relationship at two very differerent times of life.

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Harry idolises Lewis, very much so, copying the things that he does, and says, and every Sunday he will come with us to watch Lewis play football, shouting and cheering at the sideline, kicking a ball about just like his big brother.

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And there are times, when Lewis isn’t out with his mates and Harry isn’t wrapped up in Twirly Woos or Mr Tumble, when their attention is solely on eachother and I hear them playing together, laughing together, sharing a bond that I will never come close to understanding.

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And at night, often I find them cuddled up together, head to head, their features so alike, and those times, those precious moments, are the ones that remind me why it was so important for Lewis to have his baby brother. Right now those ten years may feel like an eternity and yet in time, as they grow, the age gap will effectively lessen, and one day, in the not too distant future, those ten years will feel like nothing at all. It excites me to think that, in time, these boys of mine will have the best friend they could ever have hoped for in each other.

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And for me, almost two years later, the novelty still hasn’t worn off, and probably never will, of being able to say, “My boys”. Ten years later, brothers, best friends, and living proof that dreams really do come true.

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72 Comments

  1. min1980
    March 30, 2016 / 11:13 pm

    Lovely photos and a lovely post. I hope one day Piglet gets to have a lovely sibling relationship *dreams wistfully* #BloggerClubUK

    • March 31, 2016 / 7:42 am

      Ooh fingers crossed!! It’s my favourite part of being a mummy I think, seeing them together, more so with having waited such a long time for that. Just not sure it will all be as lovely when they’re tearing eachothers hair out or telling tales!!! Xx

  2. March 31, 2016 / 1:21 pm

    Those photos of the big brother and little brother are the sweetest! And it’s so obvious from looking at the pictures that they indeed have a strong and special bond 🙂

    • March 31, 2016 / 6:42 pm

      Thank you, they really do! Harry has Lewis wrapped around his little finger!! xx

  3. March 31, 2016 / 3:20 pm

    so beautiful my own children are aged 5,6,7,12,13 and 17 and I love nothing more than seeing the older 3 playing with the younger 3

    • March 31, 2016 / 6:41 pm

      Oh wow you really ARE super mum!! My youngest three are 1, 2 and 3 so I feel your pain with the small age gaps!!! xx

  4. erinconefrey
    March 31, 2016 / 6:00 pm

    Maybe I am just an overly emotional boy mom, but I read this with tears streaming from my eyes! You write beautifully about your family and the love you have for all of your children shines through. My heart feels so broken for Lewis over the loss of his first brother, but so happy that he has this wonderful relationship now. <3 <3 <3 Erin of Stay at Home Yogi

    • March 31, 2016 / 6:40 pm

      Ahh thank you Erin, bless you though!! That’s exactly it I think, it’s always going to be bittersweet for Lew and I but our Harry helps to heal our hearts every single day. Thanks for reading. xxx

  5. March 31, 2016 / 7:42 pm

    Beautiful photos! Made me really smile, what a lovely relationship your boys have! I’m so glad that although their relationship will not recreate his lost relationship or the one that should have been, Lewis has a wonderful ‘new’ relationship 🙂

    #brillblogposts

    • March 31, 2016 / 8:19 pm

      Thank you. It makes me happy every single day, I waited such a long time for “my boys”, although it doesn’t take away the pain, it most definitely makes it more bearable. Xxx

  6. March 31, 2016 / 8:28 pm

    You have gorgeous boys! Its just so lovely for them to have each other. I often wonder if my 2 young ones will have a special bond as they grow with them being boy and a girl, i hope they do. Marie ☺

    • March 31, 2016 / 8:33 pm

      I’m sure that they will. As close as my boys are and my girls too, between them they all have amazing bonds that are so different and special in so many ways. There is only 12 months between Megan and Harry and in that way their bond is very special. Xx

      • March 31, 2016 / 8:47 pm

        Aww thats so lovely, my boy is almost 4 and girl is 17 months and he wasnt to happy when she came along, although he was instantly protective he didnt want to go near her, hes much better now though. 🙂 xx

        • March 31, 2016 / 8:51 pm

          I’m sure they will be the best of friends, sometimes it just takes a while!! Xx

  7. March 31, 2016 / 8:46 pm

    This is beautiful and it’s put a tear in my eye. x

    • March 31, 2016 / 8:50 pm

      Aww thank you for reading!! Xx

  8. March 31, 2016 / 9:13 pm

    I smiled all the way through this post, the eyes tell a lot and it is clear they adore each other x

    • March 31, 2016 / 9:36 pm

      Thank you!! They really do, long may it last!! Xx

    • April 1, 2016 / 6:39 pm

      Thank you, he really is the best. Xx

  9. April 1, 2016 / 9:04 am

    What a beautiful family! Amazing photos!

  10. April 1, 2016 / 2:35 pm

    This is such a lovely post and so heart-warming to see your boys getting on so well together. Handsome lads too 🙂

    • April 1, 2016 / 6:33 pm

      Thank you!! I so hope it lasts!! Xx

  11. April 1, 2016 / 5:52 pm

    Awww, the photos are so adorable. Especially the one where they are looking straight at each other. I am so sorry for the loss of Joseph. X

    • April 1, 2016 / 6:31 pm

      Thank you, Lewis loves his little sisters so much but there’s something very special about having a same sex sibling I think. Xx

  12. April 1, 2016 / 7:53 pm

    Beautifully written, you have brought me to tears. Gorgeous photos x

    • April 2, 2016 / 5:31 pm

      Ahh bless you. thank you for reading!! xx

  13. April 1, 2016 / 10:06 pm

    This is such a moving and beautiful post. Your boys look so happy together. Lewis looks like a very proud big brother. Beautiful x #StayClassy

    • April 2, 2016 / 5:30 pm

      Thank you, he really is very proud and super protective. Thanks for reading. xx

  14. April 2, 2016 / 6:09 am

    You describe such a lovely bond between them, my boys fight like cat and dog but also adore each other at the same time. Sebby and Kian are especially close despite a 13 year age gap

    • April 2, 2016 / 5:27 pm

      Oh that’s reassuring to hear, I think a large age gap definitely has it’s advantages doesn’t it? Lewis is far too old to engage in childish squabbles and also old enough to understand that his little brother needs more attention at times. I love watching them grow together, I’m sure there will be highs and lows but ultimately, I hope that they find a friendship in their later years. Thanks for reading. xx

  15. April 2, 2016 / 2:26 pm

    I adored reading this post. I have a boy and a girl and I really hope that they will grow to be best friends. The photos of the boys are really great. #stayclassy

  16. Nige
    April 2, 2016 / 5:10 pm

    I look forward to your link-up every week Laura another truly beautiful post written so well about lovely sibling relationships I’m one of 3 children but basically grew up on my own due to a very large age gap so always felt like an only child probably the reason I had 5 children so they have that siblings to love and care for.
    Your son looks happy with his little brother and I’m sure they will grow up as best friends and brothers.
    Possibly the best post I have read so far this year wonderful thanks for linking to the #binkylinky

    • April 2, 2016 / 5:25 pm

      Aww thank you so much!! That made me feel quite emotional actually! I worried so much about the large age gap but couldn’t have asked for more when it comes to the bond that all of my children share. I think that is my favourite part of being a parent to be honest, seeing the way that they all interact and finding their feet in a larger family. Thank you again for such a lovely comment, and as always for hosting. xx

  17. April 2, 2016 / 7:11 pm

    Oh, this is beautiful. Those pictures are so precious! It must be such a pleasure and a privilege to watch these two gorgeous boys together. X

    • April 3, 2016 / 7:45 pm

      Thank you! We certainly think so! xx

  18. April 2, 2016 / 9:11 pm

    Beautiful pictures. I have twins and love seeing their bond develop. Your children are beautiful. Thanks for linking up to the #BinkyLinky

    • April 3, 2016 / 7:43 pm

      I always imagine that twins have a bond like no other. It’s amazing seeing the individual bonds, they are all so different and so special in their own ways. Thanks for reading. xx

  19. April 3, 2016 / 7:58 am

    What beautiful photos! He makes such a caring, great big brother. Even if there is a large age gap I think they will be firm friends xx

    • April 3, 2016 / 7:40 pm

      Thank you. Yes, Lewis waited a long time to be a big brother and I think the youngest three are very lucky to have him. He always tells me when Harry is 18 and he is 28 that he will take him to the pub, hehe! Thanks for reading. xx

  20. April 3, 2016 / 11:28 am

    This is such a lovely post! I have 2 girls and I also have 2 sisters myself so all I know is the relation between girls so it was very interesting to read this and find out more about the bond between boys! Your photos are so cute and they really tell me the strong bond that they have. It is really lovely to see that!! 🙂 xx

    • April 3, 2016 / 7:39 pm

      Thanks lovely! My girls are undoubtedly close, I think sisters tend to share such an emotional bond somehow? But my boys have bonded in such a different way, but equally special. I love seeing the bonds between all four of them, each of them has a different relationship and it is exciting to see those develop. Thanks for reading, xx

  21. April 3, 2016 / 4:47 pm

    Laura, I really enjoy the way you write. Although many of what you share has it’s sad side, you also show the light in the shade. I’m glad your boys are close and they have such a special bond. Your siblings are so important when you are young and hopefully nurtured correctly throughout your adulthood, should make for a friendship that lasts a lifetime. I’m so grateful to be still so close to my siblings 33 years on.

    Sally @ Life Loving
    #LifeLovingLinkie

    • April 3, 2016 / 7:36 pm

      Thank you Sally, that’s really lovely of you to say so. And I agree, although so much of what I share has a sad side, such is life, I do try and share the positives too even on the days when I am struggling to see them. I have so much to be grateful for and my children remind me of that each and every day. I wish I had a closer bond with my own sibling which is why it is so important for me that my children grow up close. I am glad that you have that with your siblings. Thanks for reading. xx

  22. April 4, 2016 / 11:36 am

    You sounds like a very brave, strong person. As a mother of three sons, I know the bond brothers have is very strong though not as immediately obvious as that between sisters. I’m very glad for your sons that they have each other, especially after the loss of your second son.
    #bloggerclubuk

    • April 4, 2016 / 7:27 pm

      Thank you. I completely agree, the bond is not as noticeable as my girls, they are completely inseperable, but that doesn’t make it any less special. It’s just very different! Thanks for reading. xx

  23. Becky, Cuddle Fairy
    April 4, 2016 / 3:31 pm

    Ah what a lovely story! It’s great that your boys get along so well. Lewis & Harry sound like great buddies. It’s a special bond between them for sure. Thanks so much for joining us at #bloggerclubuk

    • April 4, 2016 / 7:26 pm

      Thank you! They are so sweet together, lets hope that it always stays that way! Thanks for hosting! xx

  24. April 4, 2016 / 7:44 pm

    This is such a beautiful post. It reminds me very much of the relationship between my stepson (12 years old) and my daughter (almost 1 year) – I was worried the age gap would be a bit of a problem but what I didn’t count on was the instant unconditional love he feels for her. It is so sweet to see. Lewis looks like a wonderful, caring big brother xxx

    • April 4, 2016 / 7:46 pm

      Aww lovely! That’s just it isn’t it, it really is unconditional, I worried so much about the age gap and now I know that there was nothing at all to worry about. There is ten years between my husband and his siblings, once they hit adulthood those years seemed like nothing at all. Thanks for reading. xx

  25. twotinyhands
    April 5, 2016 / 9:49 am

    Oh that is so lovely. Bonds between any siblings are special! I love your photos of the boys together, they are really special! Thanks for sharing X #marvmonday

    • April 5, 2016 / 11:55 am

      Thank you! They are rather lovely aren’t they? Thanks for reading. xx

      • twotinyhands
        April 5, 2016 / 3:13 pm

        Adorable x

  26. April 5, 2016 / 8:30 pm

    Ahh bless you Laura their bond is growing and sweet every step of the way. Each bond between each siblings is different I think. I have seven siblings and myself and its six boys and two girls we all are so close and bonded in so many different ways sisters, brotheres, sister/brother close in age, sister/brother far in age apart, its’ all so beautiful to be apart of you have that with your little beautiful family here and they will have this relationship and bond of various kinds together. So lovely to witness. Thanks for linking up to Share With Me #sharewithme

    • April 6, 2016 / 2:01 pm

      Oh wow seven siblings! Amazing! I agree, the bond between them all is so special and also so very different. I love seeing them together, it’s my favourite part of being their mummy I think! Thanks for hosting. Xx

  27. April 5, 2016 / 8:45 pm

    Oh my goodness, stop making me tear up! : ) Such a sweet post. They really do look very similar and it sounds like they have a very special bond of their own that nobody else can really understand. The ten year gap doesn’t make a difference! : ) My brother is a couple years younger than me and we had a very close bond when we were children, I think kids will create their own bond despite years or gender, it’s just so lovely brothers and sisters! Thanks so much for linking up with #StayClassy!

    • April 6, 2016 / 2:03 pm

      Aww thank you, they are so lovely aren’t they, I am totally biased but still….And yes, they are so alike, I love that as the girls are polar opposites with their blonde hair and blue eyes! Thanks for reading! Xx

  28. April 5, 2016 / 9:16 pm

    Lovely post and what gorgeous photos! Thanks so much for linking up to the #MadMidWeek Linky! x

  29. April 6, 2016 / 11:48 am

    Thanks for sharing your beautiful boys. Such a touching story and exciting to see their relationship grow. #FabFridayPost

  30. Raffa
    April 7, 2016 / 9:42 pm

    I always say to my parents: The best thing they could make for me was giving me siblings. I have a little sister and a little brother, and I couldn’t love them more than I do.

    • April 8, 2016 / 4:21 pm

      Aww I envy you that. I have an older brother but we have never been close, I wanted a sister my whole life, that’s why I’m so glad that my girls have eachother and all four of them have someone to grow old with. xx

  31. April 11, 2016 / 11:07 pm

    Once again I need a tissue please! I have 2 boys 10 years apart. They are half brothers as well and there’s a lot of jealousy and it makes me so sad that I’m afraid that will prevent them from ever having a “true” bond. Great read as always. So sorry for the delay in commenting as I have been vacationing and pre and now post vacationing. Thank you for always linking with #momsterslink

    • April 14, 2016 / 12:15 pm

      Ahh sorry this made you emotional! I worried about jealousy with there finally being another boy but I think for us it was very different in that Lewis had waited such a long time for a brother there wasn’t even a hint of jealousy that he was no longer the only boy. Maybe your boys just need to find a way to connect, it doesn’t always happen instantly, the jealousy will subside as they grow I’m sure. xxx

      • April 14, 2016 / 2:52 pm

        My stepson was my husbands only son (my husband also took care of his brother who wasn’t his biological son but was and is the only father he has known) there was even jealousy there. Then I came along and we had 3 kids together. So now he had went to being his fathers only child to having to share him with 3 younger siblings. And he only has jealousy with my son …not the girls. Always competing with a 6 year old and he’s about to be 16. It drives me crazy!

        • April 14, 2016 / 3:01 pm

          Oh wow that sounds so difficult. I would understand it more had the age gap been small and there were comparisons made, but 6 and 16 is such a huge difference isn’t it? I worried about Lewis going from being an only child for 8 years to having to share me with three others and yet thank god, he made it so easy. Perhaps it simply isn’t in his nature, whereas for your stepson he feels jealousy a little more than others? It must be really tough when there is competitiveness amongst siblings, I worry about it for my girls as they are compared constantly by others, and even myself on some levels. I try so hard not to but its human nature to compare your children!! I hope that things get easier with time between your boys. xxx

  32. Morgan Prince
    April 13, 2016 / 6:06 pm

    Well now, there you go again making me cry! This is another beautiful post. It’s so lovely that your boys have a bond and I’m sure they will only get closer as Harry grows. My two drive each other nuts, there’s 5 years between them, but sometimes they get on and it is lovely.
    Thanks for linking to #PoCoLo

    • April 14, 2016 / 12:06 pm

      Aww I’m sorry!! Again!! I know what you mean about them driving eachother nuts, my girls are the best of friends but wow do they know how to wind eachother up!! The great thing about Lewis and Harry is that the age gap is so wide that neither feels the need to wind up the other one, but just wait until they are 18 and 28….I’m sure it will happen! xx

  33. April 13, 2016 / 6:18 pm

    I have three boys the friendship and bond between them is just so so beautiful. I can identify with everything you said. The love between is absolutely mesmerising x

    • April 14, 2016 / 12:05 pm

      Aww how lovely, I bet they each have special bonds don’t they? The love between siblings really is mesmerising, I so hope that it lasts. Thanks for reading. xx

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