Becks plays the Little Brother role so well. I know this because I play the same role: I’m a Little Sister. This role will never change as their age climbs. When I’m around my Big Sister, I fall into line. I stop paying attention. She leads and I follow. I defer all family questions to her. I become stupid and accept her info on principle because she’s my Big Sister. She’s always right because she’s smarter.
And simply because she’s my Big Sister. But she is smarter. Trust me.
Becks chases after Coop. Wanting his approval. Eager to impress Coop and his older friends. Asking for info he knows his Big Brother possesses. He’s the Little Brother.
It’s very easy for Coop to always be on top. He’s older, faster, and wiser. He’s the Big Brother and Becks will always be tagging along. But Coop knows the unspoken Big Brother rule: be a kind and humble leader.
When Becks needs help, he doles out Big Brother-ness. He wrestles at a half strength and sometimes runs at a slower speed. Occasionally he’ll let Becks win at a board game and will half-heartedly roll the dice when I force him to play the game Becks wants. Coop helps him with words while reading and congratulates him for getting the big ones right. I love watching this sweet dynamic play out. He steps aside and allows Becks to reign supreme.
But just for a little while… Coop’s gotten used to being the leader. When it’s time, he’ll use just enough strength to wrestle back his role as Big Brother.
And Becks happily tags along.