My Little Sister, the middle child in our little family, turns 21 this week. Middle Child Syndrome? What an abstract concept. Maybe she has it, maybe she doesn’t. But the fact remains: she’s awesome.
She does not adhere to stereotypes
She can’t change the fact that she is a middle child. In fact, I think she loves it. But she certainly has not let it shape her personality. Children don’t read psychology magazines. The internet is full of articles like Why the middle child rocks and Why being the middle child sucks, and she would never advocate either of them*. She embraces each of our roles in our family and would never suggest that she is better – or worse – than anybody.
She makes us loosen up
I’m a fairly wound-up eldest sister. She is the one who strikes a ridiculous pose in photos, or laughs and laughs until everybody joins in. Her given name means “cheerful”, and there is no doubt about it. She keeps me from suffocating in my own seriousness. When she was little, she once coloured our Little Brother’s** face with permanent markers.
She is naïve
And I don’t mean that in a negative sense, really. She is an idealist and a romantic, and it leads her to say things like, “Look, [her boyfriend] loves me so much, his pupils are like hearts!”
She is not afraid to ask questions
Because if you have an older sister who knows everything, why wouldn’t you! 😉 As a child she once looked at my pet hamster’s over-sized family jewels and asked when “she” was going to lay eggs.
She is passionate
My sister is studying Occupational Therapy and I think her patients will be the luckiest people to her as their OT. She devotes so much to her profession and her advocacy for patients inspires me. She has spent her 21 years identifying the things that she loves, and she is devoted to them.
She humbles me
Sweet as she is, my little sister does not stand back. She will not be trodden over, and she is not afraid to put up a fight. Oh, and have we fought! But she also has a strong maternal instinct and during my final year she cooked dinners for me regularly, because I’m pretty useless in the kitchen and I prioritised graduating over eating. My little sister will not let my ego get in the way.
She is the mortar of our family unit
My sister has a pure heart. She will sooner love you to death than cause a rift in the family. She is the bridge that makes the gap between my little brother and me (eight years) seem smaller. She is the one that takes the best out of our different generations and asks, “What generation gap?” When I think of her, I think of an octopus that reaches out and draws each family member closer to home. (Oh my. I just realised that being compared to an octopus really isn’t all that flattering. But, Little Sister, I mean it as the biggest compliment.)
Happy birthday, my sweet Little Sister. I love you.
* I fully intended to write a post about middle children in general and why I love my middle sibling, but as I read through other on the internet I found myself shaking my head and thinking, this is all wrong. You just can’t generalise a person into an entire buzzfeed article. My sister has some characteristics in common with the “general” middle child, but in most other aspects she is just who she is – just as all eldest, middle, and youngest siblings, really.
** You just have to wait another three and a half years for a post about all his shenanigans!