Thursday, February 12, 2009


If you are the oldest of your brothers and sisters or even a mother you will understand this and empathize with me completely. Often times when you are the oldest a lot of responsibility is heaped upon your shoulders and as soon as the next sibling(s) comes along you find yourself no longer the only child but the one that is pushed to the back sort of pushed out of the way because you came first and by the time the other siblings drop you are expected to be self sufficient and self reliant. This sets the precedent the tone for the rest of your life as the Eldest, The oldest, the first one. I don't think the younger siblings see the sacrifices that the oldest makes, they don't see the hard first we have to break through in order for our parents to be worn down by the time it's their turns. I don't think that they get that we are responsible for them, if you were like me you did a lot of looking after your siblings so much in fact it molded and shaped your personality early. I got used to being the surrogate mother hell I have been wiping asses and raising children seems like all my life but I have yet to have any of my own.

I am proud of the young man that my youngest/middle brother is because I know that I helped him get this far. I helped with homework, with emotional crisis, with a shoulder and strong back to lean on, and with sound advice, even helping him laugh and shaping his sense of humor and sense of independence. I was so proud that he got into the college he choose, I was proud that he has this amazing talent that has been nurtured and that will carry him where ever he chooses to go. I am extremely proud I was here to watch him become a young adult, I would have felt cheated if I hadn't seen him grow up. I was here for his prom, I was here for his graduation, I was here for all the important milestones and he's not finished yet this I am sure of.

I know people think I am harsh with my siblings but I see their potential and I want what's best for them even when they try my patience and nerves. Even when they do things to me that break my heart and make me want to fuck them up. I love each of my siblings genuinely and deeply. That's why when they do something that causes their lives to veer off unto unfamiliar and bumpy paths my disappointment in their choices are great. I know they each have to live their lives but I will always be their older sister that will never change. I will always want what's best for them even if they don't want it or recognize it for themselves. Once you become the oldest that role never stops, it becomes life shaping and huge. It colors your world and it shapes your thoughts and actions. It makes you more responsible more cautious it makes you reevaluate your choices because you know your choices are going to be the measuring stick that is used by your parents to guide and tweak your siblings so that they don't make the same mistakes they made with the older kids. Every set back every wrong turn will be magnified and examined and used as a guide as what not to do for your sibling. Your name will be drug into conversation after conversation especially if you mess up and your siblings get it right the first time they attempt something you will never hear the end of it NEVER!

But that is the role that you have been caste into, it takes a strong person to be the oldest. You don't get the luxury of being really seen anymore, you don't have the luxury of still having your parents all to yourself and you become a surrogate parent of sorts, you start being given more responsibilities more chores by the time you hit your late twenties you feel like you have already raised some kids and had your own family, well maybe not you all but I do. I feel like I have lived a first life and now I'm on my second, the funny thing is I don't recall having any fun carefree moments if I did they were few and far between. I feel like I have always been old, taking care of someone not having the luxury of just being responsible for myself and I don't think my siblings appreciate that, not at all.

I don't think they see the things I have done, endured for them. The worry, the prayers, the wishes, the hopes, the dreams. I don't think they see any of that. I don't think they appreciate me having less so that they could get more, I don't think they can appreciate the fact that without me as their advocate in somethings they wouldn't have been heard or taken seriously. I know that in that respect mothers and eldest children will always be alike they give so much and do so much on a daily basis that it goes unseen. No one evaluates the journey but they always examine the end product. It's like a rose growing up through concrete its a beautiful flower in the middle of the most unconventional place ever, but the rose is the end product but how did that rose push up through that concrete and get what it needed to bloom, grow, and thrive?

No one ever thinks about the dirt!