“Sometimes being a brother is better than being a superhero.” - Marc Brown
Caleb turned thirteen a few weeks ago, and one of the gifts he received from us was a sign for his room with this quote painted on it. And with Caleb, this is absolutely true. He’s my son, but he’s also my hero.
I have shared a great deal of our journey in adopting our two girls. I have not been as forthcoming with Caleb’s experiences as the big brother, partly because he wouldn’t be comfortable with me sharing a lot about him, and partly because I was still holding a lot of what I observed with him close to my heart, sweet memories just for me.
But now it’s time to brag on my boy!
We have been through a lot together, Caleb, Brent and I - a marriage separation, 6 moves, miscarriages, foster kids, and now the adoption of his two sisters. He has handled it all with such a sensitive heart and quiet strength and resolution, and I respect him deeply for it.
Because we had endured so many storms together, we were very close - a happy little trio - and Caleb had a life most kids would envy - the sole focus of his parents, his own room, every toy and video game a kid could hope for, and even the only grandchild on one side of the family.
We had read that when deciding to adopt, we should not allow the existing children in our family to have a choice in the matter. The logic was, as with a new biological baby, it’s the parents’ choice, not the children’s to add to the family. Our family was a little different - we knew adding on in this way would seriously change our lives, making our “three musketeers” no more. So, when we found the girls, we had Caleb meet them and allowed him to make the final decision on whether or not we would adopt. I believe with all my heart that he took that task seriously, and with prayer decided to sacrifice his “easy” life to become a big brother.
I loved Caleb before his sisters came along. I loved his creative mind, his sense of humor, his loyalty to friends, his deep way of thinking about life, his ability to communicate his feelings, his athleticism, his desire to make people happy and be a good friend, his sensitive heart and love for God. I love him even more now that big brother is added to the list! He has weathered this tornado of additions to our family better than his dad and I have. He loves his sisters unconditionally. Little sisters can be a pain in the neck to any big brother, but little sisters with emotional issues are not always easy to live with. He treats them with kindness and gentleness and respect.
He is a big part of bringing the healing our girls need when it comes to trusting men and how they should treat children. He is a huge help to me as I've adjusted to being not only a mom of three, but a mom of two girls who have special needs and behavioral issues and a lot of therapy appointments. I am absolutely convinced that I couldn't have done this without him.
Yesterday I put a shirt on Amie that says, "Mommy's princess." I read it to her, and she said, "No, I CALEB'S princess." That about sums it up - they don't always act like it, but Caleb is a superhero to his sisters, and most definitely to me!