“Logan is hurt,” I told him. “That’s where anger usually starts.”

In my experience both being a mother and a human, I find this fact to be overwhelmingly true.

With whipping capes and flaring swords, they battled in the living room.

Brother fighting brother.

Once friends but now enemies.

Logan had planned a special day for Connor. He even wrote a list of things they would do together, and food he would make for a picnic in the creek.

Mind you, they were six and nine. Connor is now nearing twelve and sadly his days of donning superhero costumes are over. This was sad not only for my momma heart, but for my arsenal of writing material.

Because Super Connor was one of my favorite characters to write about, along with his trusted sidekick — Diaper Boy (even though Logan refuses to take credit for that role).

So, Connor had just turned nine years old and his interests were changing. He didn’t really want to pretend to be a superhero anymore or play with Transformers.

And thank the Lord for that because my kids didn’t play with those things anyway. They just turned it around three times, pulled off its head, and handed it to me.

“Can you do this?”

And then if I couldn’t (and I always couldn’t) they’d whine and cry until their Dad got home who still remembers how to transform Optimus Prime from 1983.

That day, however, their age gap was at its worst, and Connor had decided not to hang out with his little brother. Logan was crushed, and to be honest, so was I. Not that the kids hadn’t fought before — and by before, I mean like 30 seconds ago.

This time Logan was genuinely hurt. Connor already had plans to go to a friend’s house that day, and as Logan watched him leave that pain transformed into pure anger (Transformer pun not intended but then kind of intended after I noticed it!).

Intense anger at that.

He took his favorite picture with the frame titled “Brothers are Friends” off the wall.

He made his bed so that his pillow and top blanket was at the foot of the bed, because he didn’t want to “look across the room and see his face.”

And he made a vow that he would not speak to Connor again. Not ever.

“Even if he stubs his toe. I won’t even ask him if he is okay.”

None of my logical explanations meant a thing to the shafted six year old. The longer Connor was gone, the madder Logan got, and when Connor walked into the door, Logan wouldn’t even look his way.

“Hi, Logan.”

Connor was getting nothing out of his little brother who just kept staring ahead at an episode of Phineas and Ferb he’d already watched three times.

Later in the kitchen, Connor came to me.

“I guess Logan is mad at me.”

“Logan is hurt,” I told him. “That’s where anger usually starts.”

In my experience both being a mother and a human, I find this fact to be overwhelmingly true. Anger is rooted in hurt. Sometimes it is hurt that you caused, other times it is hurt caused by someone else being projected onto you.

Either way, that’s where it starts.

Hot anger is sparked from the deepest hurts. Smoke rises from pain, and it blackens some of the soft places in our hearts.

And I think that is where so many problems come from in society. Deep hurts are projected and thrown around in so many directions we often can’t see straight. Sometimes we don’t even know why we hurt — we don’t even know where the fire started. In some cases, hurt from generations ago still linger in our midst.

But reaching out is always the best way to start. Breaking the silence.

Connor seemed to understand that as he rounded the corner donned in his favorite old cape he hadn’t worn in months and extended a shiny plastic sword to Logan.

Super Connor was on the scene. But this time his usual sidekick was his nemesis.

They clanked their swords and Logan swiped at his brother with a vengeance until the dog jumped into the fight, grabbed Connor’s sword and took off up the stairs with it. They broke into laughter and ran after her.

Super Connor and Diaper Boy back together.

But don’t tell Logan I called him that.