September 12, 2015

The Evolution of Sibling Relationships

First of all, happy 22nd birthday to my sister Natalie!

Sibling relationships. It is a topic that I think about often and I wanted to share my thoughts on them. When you are young and are growing up with siblings, you often fight and are annoyed with them for little silly things. As you grow older, your relationship with your siblings can change and evolve into something much different. In my case, it has changed into beautiful relationships and I can call them my best friends.

I have a brother and a sister. My brother Edwin is two years younger than me and my sister is four years younger than me. When I was in third grade, my parents bought a farm up north and we went there every single weekend and during school vacations, for a week at a time. When I was younger, a lot of times I felt like I missed out on times with friends due to being up north so often and therefore, don't feel like I had very strong friendships in school. Instead, I hung out with my family a lot.

We swam in my parent's pond, we played board games, we played super Nintendo, etc. I remember arguing a lot with them and getting annoyed with them. We joke that when my sister was young, she always got out of chores by saying that she was sick. I remember at times, feeling embarrassed about spending time with family instead of friends. It was considered "uncool" to be seen with your family instead of friends.

 Of course, we had tons of great times that are now funny memories to us. Some of my fondest memories include dancing in the car and making up dances, playing "club", sharing a bed together on vacation, swimming in the pond playing a game called "colors", etc.

What sparked this blog post is thinking about how much has changed since then. Fast forward some number of years and my siblings are my best friends. Aside from my husband, daughter and parents, there is no one that I would rather hang out with.

My sister and I are super close. When I am with her at an event such as a wedding, I have way more fun and feel like I can "come out my shell" way more than if I was with other people. My favorite things to do are to have bonfires, sit around and talk and just hang out with family.

Joking around at my parent's farm
If I am seen with my family, I feel proud. I am thankful for strong relationships with my siblings. My brother currently lives 3+ hours away and I don't get to see him as much as I would like to but I try to make an effort because these relationships are important to me.

Always messing around!
I was recently hanging out with my husband's cousins who are 10 year old twins, a 9 year old and a 5 year old. The 10 year old girl was telling me how annoying her sister is and how she wanted her to go away. They were arguing just like most kids do and it got me thinking. That's how my siblings and I used to be.

From the time that you are a kid to the time you are an adult, a lot changes with your relationships with your siblings.  They become your best friends instead of an annoying kid. You are thrilled to spend time with them instead of trying to get out of the house with your friends.

I explained to my husband's cousin that even though she is annoyed with her sister now, later in life, they will be her best friends. I told her to cherish the relationships with her sister and brothers because things will change.

Of course, many people have the potential to let these relationships go and not be close. Sadly, there is issues with my dad's side of the family and he does not talk to his siblings. It is really for the best but early on in life, I decided that I do not want our family to be that way. It serves as a reminder to keep my relationships strong with my siblings and to talk out any issues that we have. Sure, we still get annoyed at each other at times at fight but I always want us to be close.

One day, I hope to give Adalyn a sibling and I pray that they have a close relationship like I do with my siblings. I know that they will fight and get annoyed with each other but I will do all that I can to encourage them to have a close relationship.

Well, this got a little longwinded but it fascinates me how much sibling relationships change over time. I am so thankful for my siblings. Love you Edwin and Natalie!

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