For those of you who don’t know, my not-so-little brother is 3 years younger than me and turned 17 on May 3rd.
Despite this, I greeted him on Skype by screaming ‘BABY CODY.’
My friends know him as ‘Baby Cody,’ our entire extended family, even our cousins who are younger than him, refer to him as ‘Baby Cody,’ and even some of my professors know him as ‘Baby Cody.’
I would be lying if I said it doesn’t bother me that he towers over both of my parents, as well as my sister and I, that he has a full-grown beard and is more mature than I could ever hope to be.
It doesn’t bother me that he’s taller or more mature because I wish I was taller and more mature.
It bothers me because it becomes clearer every day that he hasn’t truly been ‘Baby Cody’ in a long time.
So, To My Little Brother Who Is Not So Little Anymore,
I know there’s been plenty of times when I’ve acted as if I was your second mom, but I can’t even apologize for those because you’re my baby brother and we both know who’s boss. ;)
I am always going to act as if I am your second mom because you are my baby brother and I am your big sister. I will yell at you to put the seat down after you are done using the bathroom, and I will yell at you to put the cereal away on the special occasion when you forget.
I will protect you and encourage you and I will gossip to my friends about you because you are my baby brother and I am your big sister.
I will tell them all how proud I am of you.
I am proud of the man you are becoming, and of the person, you have grown to be. I am proud of the empathy you show for others, and I am proud that you are so intelligent, funny and successful.
I want you to know that whenever I tell you to “grow up,” I don’t mean it. I appreciate the moment when you’re finally acting your age, when you are being a little bit immature, and when you’re doing your job as a little brother and annoying me endlessly, because I know someday, we’ll both be married with kids and you’re going to be a father.
I know the days of wrestling, repeatedly poking one another to see who will get annoyed first, asking you to turn my light off, and trash talking each other over video games, won’t last forever, but here’s hoping that we can stay young and immature for a little bit longer.
When you start your senior year of high school in the Fall, please don’t be in a rush to get out of there like I was.
Enjoy the time with your friends. Enjoy the home cooked meals and the doggy cuddles and sleeping in your bed each night.
Enjoy not having to pay for your groceries and gas money, and enjoy the moments where mom and dad want to treat you like the baby you used to be (and will always be to us).
You’ll love college, but I think you’ll find that there’s no place like home.
Thank you for putting up with me and for being the best little brother a girl like me could ask for.
I love you with all of my heart.