When your sibling becomes a parent is a most incredible moment. With no kids of my own and such a deep love and respect for both my bro and SIL (sister in law), the day they told me they were expecting was bettered only by the 24 hours in which she was born. That rush of love and the excited scream, joyful tears that welled as they toyed with SIL’s parents and me with the information. The jumping with excitement and tight hugs, tears of pride, grin as wide and painful as the Joker’s. I felt one moment of sadness that my own mum would miss it, knowing how ecstatically happy and proud she would be in that and every moment to follow.
The day of the 25th of June was arduous in knowing SIL had gone into labour earlier, my brother did well to keep us all informed of her and the baby’s health and progress as much as he was able to. I desperately tried to keep in mind that my impatience was nothing compared to that of Bro and SIL. At 5:57 pm I got confirmation that the most beautiful, amazing, angelic, sweet little thing in the world had been born. Affectionately referred to as ‘My Sunshine’ or ‘My Favourite’ by aunty Nic, I was in at the hospital as early as possible the next day. Eight months on and Sunshine has become more than the light, she is a rolly-polly angel, so deeply loved and adored by all.
Other than gaining a niece, one of my favourite changes through this period has been watching my Bro become the amazing dad he is. This guy has been my idol for a lifetime, not just because he’s my big brother. He has always shown such heart, sincerity, generosity (he even let me play Lego and Matchbox cars), intelligence and care. Even as small children he used to let me play or would softly speak soothing words to me in an effort to comfort when sad or anxious. These qualities only grew as he did, becoming mightier and stronger as time, experience, education and misfortune passed by. As an adult, he now adds an amazing quality of strength to his original attributes. He has an ability to view the world in such a way that no door is closed. He is supportive in most every endeavour, often researching and recommending pathways days after mentioning an idea to him. He has conquered so much, holds no grudges, and continues to love and care as he always has. It is these qualities I have been blessed to experience firsthand, that I have witnessed over our 30 odd years as siblings, that make him the amazing father he is. As an already attentive husband, he is a hands-on dad. He and SIL have worked well to produce a plan that allows Bro and Sunshine to bond after work and on weekends. I take great joy in the look his daughter gives him, the smile that only he can produce. The love that is evident between dad and daughter. I revel in the knowledge that he is her best advisor for her future, even if she had a choice. I channel our mother’s pride, knowing the adoration she would bestow on both the grandchild and incredible daughter-in-law she never got to meet. I gain such warmth and joy from witnessing my brother revel in the spoils of a happy life of love and laughter that he is more than deserving of.