Sometimes I feel that I am a full time referee.
But, there are moments of magic, where they play so well together, it makes up for the times when they...don't.
Or when B shows great compassion towards K when she's having a particular difficult time, even if she doesn't want to accept it.
Or when K tells B that she loves him out of the blue, and they give each other a genuine hug.
I try to focus on those times. Remember they really do love one another, even when their actions speak the exact opposite.
Then, last night, K came up to me and said she wanted to buy B a Christmas gift. Sure, it was two days before Christmas, and the last thing I want to do is go anywhere near a store, but none of that mattered.
She asked, on her own. We hadn't talked about them choosing gifts for one another. I hadn't come up with the idea myself (as I sometimes want to when I hear of other siblings doing the same). It was all her. She thought about her brother, without being prompted, and wanted to do something for him.
Because, regardless of what happens, there is love.
Even when our kids struggle the most, I believe, truly, truly believe, we are a family who has deep love for one another. Between the children, it might not always show, but it's there. An unbreakable bond.
And that's the only Christmas gift I need.