The Equalizer

21317632_10100187811511187_5618852228306639506_n.jpgAnyone who has more than one boy will understand that brothers fight, all the time, even when they like each other. My two boys, Jaxson and Wyatt are close in age, three and two respectively, are in a constant state of war, whether cold or hot. Usually, it is a cold war with the two bitterly arguing over toys, snacks, dinner plates (even though they are the same), what color cup they drink from, or even who gets to pet the cat first. Though the two strategize like a ping pong ball in a dryer, so at any moment the cold war could end and the hot war begins in earnest.

While both boys are big for their age, Jax is considerably bigger than Wyatt, perhaps about a head taller and twenty-five pounds heavier. Obviously, this means that Jaxson has an immediate advantage, yet presently their records are pretty even according to “Teething Ring” Magazine. Wyatt tends to strategize more while Jax tends to press his size advantage. Despite the best efforts of Becky and I to end the conflict, they boys have a standing attitude of “peace negotiations be damned, we’re fighting.”

This was all true until Wyatt’s second birthday party this year, as after that auspicious day everything changed for the better, that’s when the decidedly one-sided record evened out. It all began during the party when Jaxson stole one of Wyatt’s gifts to play with it, but Wyatt, normally a child of peace, had enough and cried. As usual, Becky tended to Wyatt while I handled things with Jaxson, getting the toy back for Wyatt and redirecting Jaxson to another toy. When Jaxson stole the toy a second time, Wyatt was ready and waiting with a piece of wood from an old coat hanger. As Jaxson tried to grab the toy, Wyatt waited until the time was right and “bam.” The coat hanger made contact with the side of Jaxson’s head. Once Jaxson began to retreat, Wyatt pressed his advantage, chasing his older brother into the bathroom, beating him like a rented mule all the way there. Jaxson slammed the door shut, locking Wyatt out, but Wyatt continued doing tormenting Jaxson, dragging the piece of wood across the door ominously, and telling him to “Come out.”

As this is happening, my father-in-law said with a laugh, “Wy’s got an equalizer!”

We all laughed because for once Wyatt was no longer the victim of aggression, instead, he was the aggressor. After ten seconds or so, I thought long enough for Jaxson to learn his lesson, I took the piece of wood from Wyatt and allowed Jaxson to escape the confines of the bathroom. He was visibly shaken, but confident in the protection racket called “Daddy.” Though, that confidence was highly misplaced, as he immediately reverted to the behavior that caused the issue in the first place: once more he stole Wyatt’s birthday present.

Wyatt must have been waiting for this to happen as he immediately snatched the metal piece of the court hanger and began beating his brother with it like he stole something, oh… like he did. Jaxson sprinted to the bathroom screaming for help and shut the door locking Wyatt out. Wyatt was not having it, he continued dragging the coat hanger across the door screaming Jaxson’s name until I removed him from the area. After a few minutes, Jaxson finally emerged from the bathroom, where he was hiding in the closet, and reeked of a full diaper of poop. I said, “Let’s go get you changed buddy.”

“Ok,” he responded, running to the bathroom in fear. Once in the bathroom, he told me that he pooped while hiding in the closet. So I asked, “Did Wy scare the poop out of you?”

In the privacy of the bathroom, with just the two of us, he replied, “Yes.”

Once we left the bathroom I laughed, imagining him cowering in fear of his little brother, who one day in all likelihood, will be bigger than him. Only fifteen more years until Jaxson leaves for college, the military, or whatever he decides to do; however, I can’t help but feel that this is only the beginning.

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