Finding A Best Friend In My Sister

Finding A Best Friend In My Sister

She can be a pain in the butt, but she is also my very best friend.
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My sister and I are four years apart. Growing up, I took on the the role as an older sibling to guide and assist her, however, it never got to the point where she was my best friend who I turned to about my life or advice.

That all changed this summer.

Going away to college changed something in our dynamic. Instead of seeing each other daily, I only got to see her over breaks. This made me realize how much of a difference her presence has in my life. I missed having someone to bicker with, to complain about house rules with, or to talk about the crazy or boring things that happen during the day. I realized those small moments meant more to me than I originally thought.

When you have a younger sibling who is four years younger than you, it is harder to bond with them and find a common ground that both individuals can relate to. When I reached a certain point in my life with new experiences and views on the world, my sister could listen, but not relate to what I was going through. When my sister told me about her life, I did not want to relate because I was already past those experiences.

Now, my sister and I are at a place where we can connect with most of the topics. We can gossip and elaborate on our lives and have a blast. She will always be my personal photographer and I will always be her personal chauffeur. We have the best ice cream dates, and road trips are never boring with her. The list goes on and on, and with that, it becomes clear now that my sister and I have become best friends. I couldn't be happier.

Brothers or sisters share a deeper connection to you than most people. They can be a pest and ruin your mood. They can steal your clothes and cause a huge fight. In the end, however, they will be there for you no matter what. With everything bad, there is something that is equally good. Your siblings can be the worst sometimes, but in the end they will always have your back. That is something so special that you should take a moment to be thankful for. If you have a brother or sister, you will always have a best friend to turn to.



Cover Image Credit: Christine Han

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To My Little Brother

Six things I want you to know.
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I am not your mother, but I am your big sister.

I cannot even apologize for it, I am always going to act like your second mom. I am going to keep yelling at you to (please) put down the toilet seat and to clean up the mess you made in the kitchen. It doesn't matter to me how often you say "I am not your mother," because you're my little brother and I'm always going to be the boss.

I never mean it when I tell you to grow up.

I hope that you have taken, and continue to take, full advantage of your childhood. As often as I complain about your maturity level, my wish for you is to put off growing up for as long as possible. The closer I get to real adult life, the more I miss home and all of the worries I didn't have. You shouldn't rush through the years you have left at home, you are doing just fine the way you are.

No, I didn't tell Mom.

All of our secrets will always stay secrets. I may have ratted you out to Mom about being the one to break her new vase, but I hope you know that our brother-sister bond protects all of the private things we share. Please, never forget that I'll always be here to listen to you.

I'm sorry.

I'm sorry for giving you your first bloody nose, and for laughing at you afterward. I'm sorry for every time I have blown you off for plans with a guy, or to get an extra hour of sleep. I'm sorry for yelling at you to leave me alone and for slamming the door in your face. I'm sorry for all of the times you asked me to play outside that I didn't. I'm sorry for all of my broken promises.

I forgive you.

I forgive you for all of the “little brother" insults you have used. I forgive you for using all of my paints and letting them dry out. I forgive you for embarrassing me in front of every guy I ever brought home. I even forgive you for cutting off that piece of my hair in fourth grade.

I am so proud of you.

It isn't said nearly enough, but I am so proud of you, little brother. I am envious of the passions that you have and the way that you pursue them with no fear! I am excited to see where you go in life (but don't go anywhere too quickly). Keep working hard and doing what you love, no one can fault you for following your heart. I love you so much, and I will always be your biggest supporter and fan!

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8 Things I Learned Growing Up Blessed With Brothers

Sometimes they can be OK, I guess.

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I was lucky enough that God graced me with siblings because for my entire life I have had two built-in playmates. However, instead of the sisters that I always dreamed of, He gave me two smelly boys.

When I was younger I always was jealous of my friends who had sisters. I used to beg my parents to adopt another child so I could have a sister. My brothers were competitive, they were stubborn, they liked to physically fight each other and me, but they've always been my best friends.

As I look back at my childhood, I realize that growing up with brothers has taught me a lot about life and I wouldn't change that for the world.

Competition.

Every day of my childhood was some type of competition between the three of us. Whether it was grades in school, sports, which TV show to watch, or who got to eat the last slice of pizza, it always seemed like there was something to be won.

Now, I can still feel that competitive spirit coming out of me. It drives me to be the best that I can be. It has really helped me when I play sports or during classes when I'm taking a test.

Patience.

My brothers always knew what to say or do to get me to blow up on them, which would always end up with me getting in trouble. My mom would always tell me to be patient and ignore my brothers when they were trying to annoy me.

At the time, it always made me angry that I was the one who had to ignore or be patient with them. However, that has taught me important people skills that I have carried with me into my adult life. I'm a much cooler tempered person and I can be much more rational when I'm angry as compared to other people I know.

Impulsiveness.

I can remember playing outside with my brothers and all the other neighborhood kids. We had a forest behind our houses that we could get to if we hopped the fence. I can remember my brothers thought it would be a great idea to throw rocks at ant hills and bee hives which always ended with someone getting bitten or stung.

The impulsive decisions my brothers made in their youth taught me how to think fast. Now, I'm good at thinking of solutions to problems quickly. I, also, tend to be much more flexible with impulsive trips to the store or off campus.

How to get away with anything.

Sneaky is one of the most prominent words that comes to my mind when I think of my brothers. They have always been able to get away with things. I can remember days when they would come into my room and explain to me the complex plan they created to sneak out or to play pranks on our parents. I never joined in on their escapades but they did show me a few tricks on how to get away with it if I ever did.

How to be a hard worker.

Both of my brothers are wrestlers and have been since they were young. In high school, my twin brother, Brendan, would be doing wrestling through winter and Thanksgiving break. This meant that's even if it's was Christmas or Thanksgiving, he would still mostly stick to his diet and decide to lay off the dessert. He also went to California for about a month over the summer to go to a wrestling camp so he could better his skills.

My younger brother, Jacob, started high school last year and did choir, the musical, and wrestling all at the same time.

Since I have watched my brothers excel in sports and work at my dad's restaurant, it has pushed me to become a harder worker with my school work and my athletics. I want to make them as proud of me as I am of them.

Self-defense.

My brothers have always been the protective type and we did martial arts in our youth, so all of us have some type of training in self-defense. With that being said, much of our practice for martial arts was on each other when we were upset. If two of us had a conflict, we would put on your sparing gear and battle it out. Through these fights, I have hyper extended my elbow, almost broke my nose, and have been beaten with a small, wooden, baseball bat. Of course, parents stopped it when it got too violent but it was always a way to fix our issues.

I'm glad that I had that experience when I was younger because now that I am on my own if someone approaches me in a violent way, I know how and where to throw a punch to make sure I can defend myself. Also, I know that my two strong, athletic brothers would always take someone down if they hurt me.

Sharing.

I was a very stubborn kid and to an extent I still am. However, having my brothers around taught me how to share. I used to never want to let my brothers play with my toys because I assumed that they would break them. I realized that if I wasn't going to share, my brothers would take my toys with force and would be more likely to break them out of anger. So, I began to let them use my things as long as they promised to give them back. When I began to let them use my things, they began to let me use their things.

I have found myself lending out many of my things out to my friends in college and they lend things to me. Sharing is a very important part of learning how to be an adult and I'm glad that I was able to learn how to share at a young age.

Love.

While I can count on my fingers the number of times my brothers have explicitly said, "I love you," to me, I know that they do love me.

When I going back home to Tacoma for the first time for Thanksgiving break, I was half asleep on the train when my phone starting buzzing. Lazily, I reached down and answered it without looking at the caller ID. It was my younger brother, Jacob. He was excitedly asking, "Hey, when are you gonna be home? Is it gonna be soon? Can we go out to lunch?"

He didn't have to explicitly say it but I knew that behind his words he was saying, "Hey, I missed you and I'm excited for you to be home."

My twin brother, Brendan, was my walking partner at my high school graduation. Right before we walked out in front of all our family and our friends and classmates' families, Brendan linked his pinky finger with mine. Having a physical reminder that I had someone on my side calmed my nerves immensely and I knew it was his way of saying that we were going to get through it together.

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