Bushboy has no siblings, by choice for a variety of reasons between his dad and me. He will tell you he has never wanted a sibling, in his words because “then I’d have to share you guys.” He has always been very willing to air this opinion and gets annoyed with people who tell him what he may be missing. He is adamant that being an only child is not a handicap, nor something he would wish to change.
All that said, he has formed the most amazing bond with our friends’ little guy. There are 12 years between them, and they met the day after E-Man was born. From the first moment, Bushboy has been smitten with this little friend. He loves to see video or pictures of him, and will talk to him on the phone whenever his mom calls. He thinks of gifts for him and things that he can do with him.
What is really neat to see is how E-Man thinks of Bushboy. If I call his mom and he sees my picture on the phone, it is Bushboy’s name he says. If you talk to him at home about Bushboy he has been known to go into his room and look at the picture collage of himself and Bushboy that Bushboy made him for his first birthday. And at camping this year, it was Bushboy he looked for in the morning after getting up. (Of course, being the only teen-ager in the group, Bushboy was obliged to be the last up every morning, leaving little E-Man to wander over to the tent calling for him every 10 minutes or so until he emerged.)
We don’t live in the same town, but we visit, and camp together often. I don’t know how this relationship will evolve, as Bushboy is beginning his bigger journey of independence while E-Man is just starting his journey of exploration. One will graduate just as the other starts school. But I know that somehow, in a way that works for them alone, these two will always be connected.