I’ve come to terms with the fact that there are certain things I will never see, do, experience, no matter how much I’d like to.
I don’t imagine I’ll ever get to visit Ireland, Pompeii, the Holy Land or the Tower of London. I’d really like to ride in a hot air balloon. I’d like to be able to visit a few people at least “one more time” while I still can.
But in the overall scheme of things, I don’t feel that I’ve missed out on a lot of things/experiences.
Yet there is one thing I’ve always wanted, and will never have, and I still feel sorta bummed about it.
I had four older half sisters, and many nieces and nephews of various ages. But one thing I never had, and always wanted, was an older brother.
I didn’t say a younger brother. Lots of nephews could fill that role. But I thought a big brother would be just right.
I felt an older brother would be a wonderful addition to my life. First, he would be able to “pave the way,” from going to school before I did, to trying out the sledding hill first. I was shy, so wouldn’t it have been great to have a big brother who would always be there to make introductions, to decide who was good to be around? This perfect brother would always be there to listen, to give advice, to stand up for his younger sister.
Of course as I grew older I observed that many brothers and sisters weren’t all that close. For some, it seemed almost as though they were like ships passing in the night. They lived in the same household and had the same parents, but they didn’t snuggle down to play Monopoly together or exchange deep secrets.
I came into contact with several guys that I liked and trusted when I went to college and later entered the work force. They somewhat played the role of “big brother.” They weren’t romantic interests; they were just people I enjoyed being around, and I felt I could share my feelings with them, ask their opinion or just talk.
A couple of “boys” in college were like “brothers,” and we spent long hours having coffee and talking at the Student Union, or on the phone. They were my confidantes.
Even after I married, I often had a co-worker or acquaintance that I considered my “big” brother…who would always listen, or go that extra mile (like putting a wounded gerbil out of its misery).
Perhaps as one gets older, it’s harder to find a pseudo-brother. Probably the last one I could give that designation to was a relative, back when I lived in Rapid. He’s still my friend…I still treasure that feeling of trust, but now we live miles apart, so I can’t so easily cry on his shoulder.
Perhaps I expected too much. My observation of my own children was that being siblings doesn’t automatically mean they loved one another’s company. A bit of jealously was no doubt in play, too. My older son once said, derisively, that his little sister was, “just a Barbie doll.” Funny, he’s now married to one…long legs and all.
As years go by, brothers and sisters often mellow toward each other, may even become best friends, and that’s nice, too.
Grandchildren Ty and Brooke—although they are only 11 months apart—aren’t always all that close to one another in daily activities, but I also know if necessary, Ty would always stand up for his little goof-ball sister.
Maybe that’s what I’ve always wanted…someone I can depend on when the chips are down, even if he might think I’m a Barbie or a goof-ball.
In search of a perfect brother