He was little and quiet and cute.
Walked in my shadow.
Always there. A constant friend.
Then he grew a little and wanted autonomy.
He chose to like what I hated. He always liked the bad guys.
If we got stuck liking the same thing, then everything was competition between us.
He was always better at sports. His legos were always cooler than mine.
If I couldn’t win with my skills, at least I was still bigger.
He knew how to push my buttons.
Laughed at me until it hurt.
So, since I was still bigger,
He became my punching bag.
But his growth was foreboding, so eventually I stopped punching.
I always thought he was cool.
Everybody always thought he was cool.
He excelled in sports. Girls liked him.
I was always proud to be his sister.
He danced with me at a wedding once. I loved it.
When he finally outgrew me at 16,
I decided I liked having a tall brother.
I liked standing next to him;
I would stretch to my full height,
and beside me, he was taller. I felt safe.
He liked his things, and I liked mine.
I went off to college and thought the gap
between us would widen; but to my surprise,
when he joined me at college two years later,
we were closer than ever.
He had grown so much more mature. I was so proud of him.
Sometimes I felt like I was swollen inside
as I walked away from one of our late night conversations.
He was deep. We talked about things that mattered.
He sincerely cared for people, and he noticed the little guys.
He was growing into a quiet leader.
He would step alongside a titled leader and help them,
Often influencing others more in his quiet way than the leader did from the front.
And I had nothing to do but sit back and smile at that…
And rejoice in who my brother was becoming.
He is a bit of an enigma to me still.
There are walls I can’t see behind.
But I see a great mind, and a hard working spirit.
He is wonderfully creative, surprising me time and again with his genius.
I expect he’ll surprise me a lot in the days ahead.
He’s fun and not afraid to be silly.
Strong in body and conviction.
Always learning. Always thinking.
Always envisioning. Always improving.
And I love that boy.