Our parents never discussed your thoughts on having a sibling, of how you’d feel growing up with, a sibling. Especially as the middle and youngest child, you are given no choice/ time to react to your siblings, they just are there. I had always wished for a sibling, specifically a sister, since the moment I could talk. I’m sure like me if told you had a preference of gender. My dream came true I got a sister! What we never anticipate, is another one might come along. For me it wasn’t long before I had 2 sisters. BUT siblings can be a blessing in disguise.
The age differences with your siblings can vary. This could affect how close you are able to be with them. Siblings can cause constant arguments at any age, and you might have become distant with them now because of simply growing up. Part of growing up is remembering who grew with you. The memories that still make you laugh; the people that influenced who you are today. Even if your relationship with your sibling was/ is strained, they were still part of your childhood, so, influenced who we are – as much as that’s difficult to admit.
I love to reminisce on the memories from watching my sisters grow up. There is a 5 and 8 year gap between us, and despite that having disadvantages at times, I was able to remember them as new-borns, as babies, as toddlers, and their big milestones…The first steps for each of them; their first giggle, as though I was a parent. I also had a tablet at this point, so I would constantly capture little moments on video, and we all look back on them today. And yes, I do remember the tantrums they had, the sobbing and shouting from me when my mum couldn’t give me enough attention…of course, we all remember the good as much as the bad, the annoying as much as the fun. Equally, those sides of your sibling/s you have grown to dislike, are also the traits that we know we wouldn’t like in a life partner and a friend. If your sibling is older you may have been influenced by them and carry traits they also have, If your sibling is younger by a few years, you may have learned how to look after a child…With siblings, comes life lessons we didn’t realise we picked up from them being around.
Your sibling may have interrupted your play dates with friends – trust me, I understand that one, they may have made you cry and called you a bad name, they may steal your clothes/ you may steal theirs, they may have annoyed you to the brink of rage, you may have shouted at each other, felt like you weren’t given enough attention, upset that you didn’t get the bigger room, and I could go on. But when we really reflect on our lives, and imagine the possibility of them not being around, it seems dull, different, and I’m guessing quite a few of you readers can’t even imagine it because they were present so much. So, whether we asked for them, or not, they have often become the best thing to happen to us.
I don’t always realise just how grateful I really am for my sisters. I am lucky enough to be very close with them – which has its benefits and disadvantages. The age difference is large, they annoy me, they come in my room when I need privacy, right now they are interrupting my writing. But every night from the ages of 3-5 I had wished upon a star that I would be gifted with a sister. I was given two. Two little girls who consistently idolise me, tell me how ‘beautiful’ and ‘smart’ I am, ask me to play with them and love me like nobody else exists in the world. So how could I not love those two just as much?
If you needed a sign to hug your sibling today, or laugh with them or go and see them, this is it.
And to my sisters, you are the best thing that has EVER happened to me.
Article by Young Reporter Grace Trippett
First published in Grimsby Telegraph 29th June 2021