A Letter To My Baby Brother

A Letter To My Baby Brother

Today I love you more than yesterday because yesterday you got on my nerves

My dearest little brother there are so many things I wish I could warn you about, give you advice about, and try to steer you in the right direction. But there is only so much I can help with because there are things you need to learn on your own. My advice to you varies from friends, to grades, to wrestling, the classes you should take and the ones you should stay away from, and love (even though you think I’m annoying when I talk about girls to you).

Your friends will be your friends until you do something they don’t agree with or you speak your mind and they don’t like the outcome. If you can’t be honest with your friends without them starting things, they aren’t really your friends. I have gone through the drama, I’ve gone through countless of groups and I honestly didn’t find my true blue friends until the end of my junior year. Yes we fight, yes we disagree, yes we get mad at each other; but despite all of that we make up and stick by each other’s sides. And from all of that, you were blessed with 4 other “sisters” that I know for a fact will look out for you when I can’t. Talyn, Jadyn, Abby, Grace, and I love you with all of our heart.

Now grades are THE MOST important thing in school. It defines you in Honor Roll or High Honor Roll, in the ranking of your class; it defines you to be ineligible or eligible for your sports (I’m serious you will not play if your grades are bad). But most importantly that is what colleges look at when they are reviewing you for acceptance; whether it’s a trade school or a 4-year college/ university they WILL LOOK AT YOUR GRADES!!! I know you hate it when mom, dad or I get on your back about them but it’s because we see greatness in your future. You ARE smart, and you ARE going places little brother.

You do have a gift of being a natural athlete, you are good at anything you put your mind to Football, Soccer, Baseball, and most of all wrestling. Usually, when I watch wrestling it’s the usual blood, sweat, and anger. But not when it comes to you; when you wrestle it’s like watching a ballet, everything is timed, every move is executed, and it’s just simply graceful. You make wrestling look so easy (which I know it’s not because you just HAVE to practice your new moves with me) but you are gifted. Don’t let that get to your head because it’s not all-raw talent; you have a lot of people to thank for making you the wrestler you are today (Burke and Brad Paddock, Mom and Dad, Biff, Buckey, Caprio, Brownie, Uncle Stevie, Logan, Seth, Zach Flaitz, and Christopher Graham) they all pushed you to become YOUR best. You’ve come a long way from when you began in CWC, and I couldn’t be more proud of you.

Now with your classes, I honestly highly recommend the Co-op if you want to go into construction (never in my life have I taken them but they have helped many), but you absolutely need to take Public Speaking, it’s helped me in more way than one, especially with my confidence. Another is calculus, I know you think you can’t handle it but K. Miller teaches kids until they understand, she doesn’t have a timeline and she is one of the most understanding teachers I know (other than Gloria Bowers). Don’t jump the gun when I tell you this but I also recommend Physics with Mr. Smith. It’s one of my favorite classes, and he is a good teacher, he puts all the problems into real-life situations AND when you get to the electricity subject you get to shock people!! I do NOT recommend the AP US history since colleges don’t accept that, and I don’t recommend History of Rock and Roll.

I may be saying this as an overprotective sister but trust me when I say no Central Mountain girl is worth your time, in fact, no girl is worth your time right now. They don’t deserve your brilliance, your kindness, or your loving heart. You are one in a million, and these girls are evil (sorry I’m being overprotective) but they only want the title of “Lane Porter’s girlfriend” when in reality they’re either going to annoy the living s**t out of you, or they’re going to break your heart. I don’t want you to go through what I have seen others go through. You don’t need to be wrapped up in some pointless drama because the girl wants attention. But if you do get involved with a girl that genuinely cares for you and about you then you need to treat her right and respect her and her family, but also don’t lose sight of what’s important (A.K.A. SCHOOL!!!!!). In the event of a breakup, never lose sight of yourself because, in the end, it’s her loss. It’s not your fault and you shouldn’t feel bad about yourself. I never want you to cry yourself to sleep because someone blamed everything on you. You don’t deserve that.

You are my adventure partner, Ice cream loving, wrestling all-star, gossip partner, baby brother, and bestest friend I could’ve ever asked for (Even though you annoy me 25% of the time). I still can’t believe I have to not only leave for college but also leave you to face some of the biggest struggles you have ahead of you. I want you to remember that I’m always full of advice, I’m one phone call away, and I’m always going to be your biggest fan and I’ll be the one screaming for you in the stands. I love you more little brother.



P.S. You aren’t allowed to have my room when I leave

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An Open Letter To My Unexpected Best Friend

You came out of nowhere and changed my life for the better.

“It's so amazing when someone comes to your life and you expect nothing out of it, but suddenly, there right in front of you is everything you ever need."


Dear Unexpected Best Friend,

You were the person I never thought I would speak to and now you are my very best friend. You came out of nowhere and changed my life for the better. I can't thank you enough for everything you have done to shape me into the person I am today. You've taught me what it means to be selfless, caring, patient, and, more importantly, adventurous.

You don't realize how much better my life has become and all because you came out of nowhere. I didn't see you coming. I just saw you on occasion, and now I can't see my life without you in it. It's funny how life works itself out like that. Our unexpected friendship filled a hole in my life that I didn't know existed.

I don't even remember what life was like before you came along; it most likely had a lot less laughter and spontaneity than it does today. I can call you about anything and you would drop whatever you're doing to help me in any situation. You know when I need encouragement. You know when I am at my best and when I am at my worst. You always know exactly what to say.

SEE ALSO: 8 Tiny Lies Every Young Woman Has Told Their Best Friend

I couldn't have found a better friend than you if I tried. We balance each other out in the best way possible. You are most definitely the yin to my yang, and I don't care how cliché that sounds. Because of you, I've learned to stop caring what people think and to do my own thing regardless of any backlash I might receive. You are my very favorite part of what makes me who I am to this day.

It's as if I wished up a best friend, and poof — you appeared right in front of me. I am so beyond blessed to have you and I wouldn't trade the world for all our memories. Thanks for coming out of nowhere.

Love you forever and a day.

Cover Image Credit: Lauren Medders

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The Universe Knew I Needed A Little Brother To Make Me Who I Was Meant To Be

Who knew my biggest annoyance would also be my biggest teacher?


Everyone has a love/hate relationship with their siblings. And if you say that you don't, you're either crazy or you're lying. Growing up, sometimes I asked myself, "Why aren't I an only child?"

My littlest brother has been bugging me since I was 4. He was born, and at the time I'm sure I thought it was the greatest thing to ever happen to me. Then he started talking. And walking. And figuring out how to push my buttons in ways that no human being ever could. (Don't worry little bro, I'll say nicer things about you later, just keep reading.)

My brother and I fought more than any pair of siblings I'd ever met in my childhood. My friends had little brothers but none of them ever seemed as fed up with theirs as I was with mine. There were times when he didn't even have to speak and I'd be furious with him. Everything set us off. As kids, we used to fight each other (physically), even though I was probably triple his weight. I remember a time when he knocked out one of my teeth, and in return, I hit him so hard he had bruises.

Do we sound certifiably insane yet? No? Just wait, it gets better.

We continued this kind of fighting until I was well into my teens. By that time he was growing, and soon he and I were an even match in terms of strength and height. This made our "wrestling" as my mom liked to call it, all the more crazy.

Once it got so heated during a car ride that we both started yelling ways we would kill the other if we had the chance. (This is the part that makes us really sound crazy.) We went back and forth for what felt like an eternity, but the funny part is that by the time we reached our destination, we were laughing so hard we had tears. We were complimenting the other's creativity and trying so hard to outdo each other coming up with the funniest ways to die.

The point of this is not to make everyone think that all we ever did was scream at each other. He's one of my favorite people on Earth, and a lot of my best childhood memories took place with him next to me.

What really helped was when I went off to college. It caught me by surprise how much I missed him. I checked in with him more than I expected, which probably annoyed him, and I found that I missed being in his company. I even missed our fights.

Now that I'm entering adulthood and he's living out his long-awaited teenage years, our fighting is less frequent and less intense.

I reflect back on my childhood growing up with my little brother, and I realized that if I hadn't had him by my side, I wouldn't be the person I am today and I'd lack a lot of the qualities that I love about myself. Part of the reason I'm tough and independent is that I had to be, growing up with him. Fighting with him taught me that I had to be able to hold my own in the world. He taught me the importance of family.

I'm extremely protective of the people I love, because of him. Growing up my little brother relied on me for a lot, whether he liked it or not. Watching out for him was an inherent part of who I was, it still is. But he also taught me that it's okay to lean on other people because I relied on him a lot too.

The older I got, the more I found myself defending him, trying to help others understand why he did some of the things he did. Maybe it's a sibling thing, or maybe it's all the years we spent harassing each other, but I've always been able to know what he means when he can't quite find the words.

I'm a good arguer. I know how to be patient. I'm good at resolving issues between myself and other people. Because those are all skills I had to develop to survive life growing up with him.

I wouldn't change my relationship with my little brother for anything in the world.

He's one of the best people I know. He is someone who may annoy me to no end but also inspires me every single day. The list of things I admire about him is just as long, if not longer, than the list of ways he annoys me. He thinks in ways no one else does, and he's a constant source of entertainment. He has street smarts I wish I had, and a perspective on life that few others can see. He's funny, creative, stubborn, and everything I'd ever want in a sibling.

I used to wonder why I had a little brother. Why I wasn't able to have the only-child life I thought I wanted. I know now, that the universe knew what it was doing all along. The universe knew I would need a constant pain-in-the-butt, in the form of a blue-eyed, blonde-haired psycho, to push me to be who I was meant to me. To show me all the things I needed to be to have the life I was meant to have. The universe brought my brother and me together in the same life, in the same family, because without him I'd be a very, very different human being.

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