18 – Talk about your siblings. If an only child, talk about what it was like.
19 – Talk about your parents and growing up in your house.
For the sake of their privacy, I will not tell you their names. I will only refer to them as my brother, sister, mom, and dad.
That being said, let’s start with the youngest – my sister. For the most part, I think me and my sister got along pretty well growing up. We were three years apart in age and shared a bedroom, so there is the normal bickering you would expect from that (such as clothes on the floor), but on the whole, it wasn’t too bad. I think my biggest complaint about my sister is more due to her being the youngest and me being the oldest, and thus feeling like she gets to do things I don’t because she’s more spoiled. One example is that she was allowed to have a boyfriend in 6th grade, but me being a sophomore at the same time was not. (Yeah, I know, you think the math is a bit off there – she was held back a few times in school, so a bit longer in school years.) Or how parents constantly said they would not help me buy a car, but would make payments for her when she didn’t have the money. Or how I was more pressured to get a job, but her laziness to put in applications was never stopped. I think its only since my brother and I moved out that I really became jealous of her, and that’s because mom and dad seemed to throw out all the rules and didn’t care how spoiled she seemed to anyone. She became like an only child and was thus treated as such. Yep, still feel that way to an extent. Maybe not living with parents will start to snap some of that out of her. But despite all that, yep, I do still love her. *Lambs, Carousel horses, or Classic Pooh characters, especially Piglet, are things that make me think of her because they are things she likes, or cause she has a lamb she has slept with since, well forever (seriously, probably since she was like 2 or 3).
Okay, on to my brother. I had a little harder time living with him. I think there were a few reasons for this. One, we’re a year and eleven days apart (me being born first). Because of this, we often shared a birthday party up until about middle or high school, with the exception of sleepovers (for obvious gender reasons). Oh, parents tried to make our day special, but birthday parties were a bit hard for me. Another issue I have with his birthday (and this really is no fault of his own, just a coincidence of time) is that his birthday was always around spring break growing up. When we moved to Calif during my high school years, he finally had to go to school on his birthday, which was a delight in my world. Another issue I had with my brother (that I think was more evident than my sister due to our closeness in age) is that we might hang out with the same folks in church, and it became obvious even then that he made friends easier than I did. He always had friends who wanted to hang out with him, where I had to beg more to get people to hang out with me. I won’t go into detail about my issues with friends growing up – its a whole other topic that I don’t want to dwell on or tears will develop. But yeah, its a bit sad when you have a joint birthday party and I have one person show up on my invite (2 in the pic, but one is my sis, so yeah, doesn’t count) but he’s got 5 (as evident from pics from that event). Even during family gatherings, female cousins were older than me and therefore harder for me to relate to, or closer to my sisters age, and the boys just naturally were drawn together. A third issue was that my brother was one who would have been in AP/GATE classes (if he was willing – he didn’t want to do them in high school) and I was a normal kid. You see shows about the younger kid having to follow and live up to an older sibling. Well, in my world, that was reversed. It was worse when we had a class together. I definitely felt more dumb and like I earned my family joke of being called a blonde compared to him in school. The old feelings are there unfortunately, but its easier to put them aside now that we are older. I guess him being in the military and being overseas and that thought of him not coming home makes it easier to no dwell on it. *Monopoly games, Jeff Gordon, and songs about the military remind me of my brother. Monopoly games were a collection at one point, Jeff Gordon were one of few ways to find his name written, and because of his being a part of the military.
(Okay, seriously not a fan of the thoughts and feelings this post is bringing out. If I make it sound like I don’t love my family, then please stop taking it that way. I would be devastated if I couldn’t see them again. And I wouldn’t change my life for the world. Yeah, there are things about it I would change, but the people themselves I wouldn’t.)
Alright, on to my parents. Umm, let’s go Dad first. Mom told me that I was a daddy’s girl growing up, but to be honest, my memories involve me going to my mom more. I guess part of that would be that Dad worked for the military up until middle school, and usually that involved him working nights, so I didn’t see much of him. When he got out of the military, he was truck driving, and then again he still wasn’t around, or I was unhappy that I never got to go on his trips like my brother might be invited to do (who cares if I was a girl or not – I wanted to spend time with my daddy!). In high school, he had an hour commute one way so that made it hard also to be around until evening. And when he was around more started in about middle school, and that’s when we started fighting more. I think it was harder to get on the same wavelength after him seeming kind of absent (I mean, its still hard to adjust to going to him for stuff after I went to mom for so long). I think I got his temper a bit too. So two people with the same temper can’t be a good thing growing up. We’d get in a fight and mom would send me to cool off outside, and that would just start me up again cause I was always in the wrong and being punished, never Dad, even if I was right, I was still punished, therefore more resentment against him grew. Yeah, the fights even continued during breaks home from college. (I used to joke about the fact that I’d only spend 2 months (broken time – week here, few days there, but the math worked to about two months) out of the year at home between college and working at a summer camp and I was happy about it. To be honest, it was mixed emotions – I was happy to be away from the fighting cause I knew there’d be at least one, but sad at the same time cause I didn’t feel the closeness to my family that my friends did and I wanted it so bad.) Just like with my brother, I think things have finally started to get better, or I’m at least able to push it out of my mind more, as we spent more time apart. *I think the one song I always think of when it comes to my dad is “Butterfly Kisses” by Bob Carlisle: www.youtube.com/watch?v=
. No we didn’t do a father/daughter dance at my wedding (we didn’t have dancing or music to begin with). But if we did have dancing, this would have been the song I would have chosen. Oh, and Star Trek, Chess sets, and Superman. Things he likes/collects and an inside joke due to an accident.
Hmm, I guess all that’s left is my mom. I think of all my family, my mom is the closest I’m to and have felt closest to growing up. I remember wanting to wear mom’s clothes and not understanding why they were “too old” for me, and then excited when she passed some of them to me. Yeah, we had our issues, I think mostly around high school, but she’s the one I felt understood my thoughts and what I was dealing with the most. She’s the one I could talk to and not feel judged. Oh, there were times when I felt she was judging and trying to restrict me, but I’m talking as a whole here. I think the biggest complaints were her attempts on trying to get me to dress or style my hair like she wanted (she wanted short hair on me, I wanted to grow my hair out – I wanted to wear sweats, she wanted me to wear jeans). Yeah, she told me she wanted to put me on “What Not to Wear” before. The other issue I had in high school, and I know there wasn’t a lot that could be done to change it, but its still resentment I felt, was my mom’s appearance at events in high school, compared to her appearance for things of my sister (I guess that also goes a bit with the jealousy I talked about earlier). Things such as swim meets and theater productions. Parents coming to visit their kids in college, and I saw my dad when he would pick me up/drop me off (yes she did come for a weekend my senior year, but you get the idea). I know there are medical reasons behind it, but its not like I cared at the time. Come on, I was an emotional teenager. *Things that remind me of my mom are crosses and mangers cause those are things she collects.
Well, that’s my family, minus the various pets we’ve had throughout the years, and other people that have become part of us because of marriage, and of course our extended family. Yeah, we’ve got our problems like most families, but we love each other also.