Thursday, February 19, 2009

Ummm, Is Sorry Enough?

I have a younger sister. In fact, I can't remember life without her, as she's only fifteen months younger than me. In many ways we're very similar -- or my parents pushed us to do the same things -- but our personalities are very different.

I was always the older good girl who did everything first and who was remembered when my sister came behind me in school and sports two years later. Looking back, I kind of feel sorry for her, but at the time, I was annoyed that she always had to do the same things I did. I never had anything for myself.

I even had to wait until I was six and a half before I could get pierced ears. July 25, 1982 I got my ears pierced. I had waited so long, and my mom kept telling me I had to wait until I was older. Want to guess when my sister got her ears pierced? Too?

I wanted to start horseback riding. I had to wait until I turned eight for a few reasons. We were in Belgium and I didn't have strong enough French to start. When we moved back to the States, I was told that the barn wouldn't take students younger than eight. I waited and waited. When I turned eight, I started my lessons. My sister was in the same lesson group. (Then again, she fell off her horse the fourth lesson in and has never gotten on a horse since. Needless to say, horses became my -- defensive? -- passion.)

As I got older, I learned to deal with it better. As a young child, however, I probably could have been a better big sister.

I had the usual dream that I was an only child. That my parents loved me best. That my sister was an imposter. That she'd go away someday. Soon. (Hey, I was four or five at the time. Cut me some slack!)

I decided that having her believe this would make it that much more real.

So I told her that she was an alien. Quite matter of factly, I informed her that when she was a baby, aliens landed on the roof of our house. They had her all wrapped up in her special yellow blanket and left her on the roof as they flew away. My parents had found her up there after she started crying loudly enough to wake them up, and they felt sorry for the little alien baby, so they decided to take care of her. But any day now, those alien parents were going to come back and take her.

I repeated this story. Often. My sister became frightened to go outside, and when forced to, she'd stare at the sky and the roof just absolutely petrified. Secretly, I was pleased with myself for getting back at her for some imagined slight.

Unfortunately, my parents eventually noticed her odd behavior. Even though she was only three or four at the time, she finally explained why she was so scared. Yeah, I got into a little bit of trouble for that, but somehow I escaped too much trouble. I know I wasn't grounded.

And then there was the time when my sister was grounded and I rubbed it in her face by playing outside directly below her window... but I'll save that one for another time.

Luckily, I've grown up quite a bit since then, huh?


Anonymous February 19, 2009 at 7:23 AM  

This completely cracked me up! I don't know why I never thought to make up stories like that. I should have!

Karen February 19, 2009 at 7:24 AM  

Ah, sibling rivalry. So I'm curious, do you see this kind of stuff in your own kids?

Simply AnonyMom February 19, 2009 at 10:07 AM  

I think that was harmless fun. Creative stories expand your imaginaion right?

I am brunette, the other 5 siblings are light blonde. They ganged up and told me I was adopted so many times. I truely believed them and was waiting for my parents to tell me the truth. I was a teenager before I realized how much I look like my dad. Oh and it helped that their light light tresses started darkening up.

Jill February 19, 2009 at 1:14 PM  

This was too funny but all to familiar! I am the youngest so I got picked on from my sister Justine. She once told me I was adopted and I went and tore up some of my baby pictures!

Debbie February 19, 2009 at 1:29 PM  

I am an only child but the mother of four. The whole sibling dynamics can be perplexing to me.

Unknown February 19, 2009 at 2:24 PM  

My brother was only 10 months younger than me. I know your feelings - the old wait until your brother is old enough can really be a trigger.

But it pays to be the older one!

J Cosmo Newbery February 19, 2009 at 4:33 PM  

There are benefits in being an only child!

That doesn't mean I wasn't brought by aliens, though.

KatBouska February 19, 2009 at 4:42 PM  

Ahahah! That's a good one. Leave it to the older sister to be SO persuausive that the younger one actually falls for it!! I love it.

Sheryl February 19, 2009 at 4:47 PM  

The problem with hasseling a younger sibling like that is eventually they grow up and get even :-)

Michelle February 19, 2009 at 7:36 PM  

blueviolet - Oh you totally should have. It was ummmm fun. I do kinda feel badly about it now though.

Karen - Actually, they get along really well 99% of the time right now. When Little Miss got to daycare today (she has am preschool), the teachers said he saw her and ran out to give her a big hug and kiss and told everyone she was his sister -- like they didn't know. He's very protective of her, but ... I also let them be themselves rather than following each other. And they're boy/girl.

Simply Anonymom - Right... they expanded my imagination. Which is why your siblings also went the adopted route?

Jill - OH! Your mom must have been so upset about that one. And poor you tearing up the pictures!

Dan - It does pay to be the older one in many ways. And I wouldn't trade!

J Cosmo Newbery - Well of course not. Aliens can drop off babies with childless people, too, right? Long time no see!

Mama Kat - Yeah. I'm still persuasive like that, too. See, aren't you glad you weren't MY younger sister?

Sheryl - You'd think so... but my sister never did get even. We just sorta stopped talking ;) I think she decided her getting even would be to pretend I don't exist.

Angela February 21, 2009 at 11:10 AM  

Aww... I'm sorry to hear you and your sis don't speak! But I know how sibling rivalry is. I had a little sister too (8 years younger) and we had battles royale. We still laugh over those stories!

Michelle February 21, 2009 at 7:10 PM  

Angela - It is kinda sad, I know. I have no issue with her, and I do talk to her when I see her, but there's no much reciprocation. I've kinda come to peace with it.

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