In light of yesterday being National Sibling Day, and my last blog post being pretty angry, I've decided to switch gears this week. Honestly, I had no idea yesterday was National Sibling Day, but waking up this morning to a bunch of Facebook posts with kind words, funny stories, and wonderful photos got me thinking about my own siblings.
My brother, Josh, is 30 years old now -- which is crazy to me. But then again, I'm going to be 28 at the end of May. Oy vey...................My sister, Johanna (aka "Jo" or "Jojo"), is 19 until the end of November. The eight and a half years between me and my sister generally makes people think that she was an "oops baby." The truth is.................she was.
No, no, no...........I'm just kidding. Jo was definitely planned. They just took awhile to recover from me. No joke.
Josh was an easy going kid who made my parents' job pretty easy. They were very lucky, until they had me. Apparently I was pretty good until about 18 months. Then I became the toddler from hell and was extremely defiant. My first word was "no." My parents used to joke that aliens stole their original baby and swapped that baby out with me. To this day I am not entirely sure if they honestly believed that or not.................
I made a babysitter cry when I was 3.............................
My parents came home to find my 5-year-old brother trying to console the babysitter.
He even made her tea!!!
So basically I was terrible.
I'm sure my parents went from thinking, "Look how amazing our little boy is.............we're such good parents," to "Where did we go wrong? Why is she still crying? I think this one is broken. Do we have a warranty on her? WHERE'S THE DAMN WARRANTY???!!!"
I annoyed the hell out of my brother when I was younger. He was always a big kid, and I'm super lucky he was a "gentle giant," so to speak, because he really could've put a good whoopin' on me if he wanted to. He never did though.
We played a lot of video games together, and sometimes I would just watch him play. He could play all the cool games that were too hard for me. We also watched a lot of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and Batman.............and I'm fairly certain we wore out our tape of "The Mask of the Phantasm." SO good.
When Jo came along, I went from being the baby to the infamous role of the middle child. It was a rough transition, but I actually became very motherly and territorial with Jo -- even at 8. I carried her around on my hip and was weary of other people babysitting her, or even just holding her. I don't even know how many very capable adults I probably lectured about being careful with my sister..............
I was such a know-it-all.
However, when Jo got old enough to really start talking (and damn did that kid have one hell of a vocabulary), I went from being motherly to thinking that this kid was the spawn of Satan.
It really wasn't until we were in Suessical together (Fall of 2004) where we became close again. I ended up getting the role of the Cat in the Hat, and Jo ended up in the chorus as a peacock. I will never forget how upset she was when she didn't get the role of Jojo. Even though she was about 8 years old, she probably could've played the hell out of that role. It just so happened that a 12-year-old boy with an incredible set of pipes (whose voice hadn't started changing yet) auditioned for that same role..............so that was the end of that.
Dad took us to Tim Horton's after the audition, and Jo locked herself in a bathroom stall -- crying. I had to crawl under the door, on the gross floor, to get her out. I looked so ridiculous struggling to get in the stall that she couldn't help but laugh at me through her tears. We had to spend so many hours together in the car and at rehearsal, from September through December, that we became extremely close. We've been really close ever since actually.
You should've seen that peacock duke it out on stage with the bumblebee (also an 8 year old) every rehearsal (and performance). They kept trying to upstage each other, and it was hilarious. Even though the bumblebee was bigger, Jo won. That's my girl...............
Josh has one of the most beautiful tenor voices you'll ever hear. Seriously. When he sings Nessun Dorma he puts Pavarotti to shame. Well, I think so anyway. He's really freaking good, okay?
Anyhow, he's a tenor, and a particularly high one at that, but is also a lineman, and is definitely built like one. So when he played the role of Gaston in Beauty and the Beast, he was a shoe in for the body build, but Gaston has a fairly low vocal range, It was between him and our friend Matt (who happens to be a bass) for the roles of Gaston and the Beast, and if you knew the two of them, it ended up having to work out that way for a lot of reasons, despite their ranges. Plus, I was Belle, and ew. Granted, Gaston is after Belle, so still ew. But I digress.
My brother and I have performed quite a bit together, from piano duets, to show choir, to musicals and variety shows. It's been really cool to be able to do that.
Have the three of us always gotten along? Absolutely not. But honestly, we're pretty lucky. We've never had legitimate problems or fights. Anything we ever fought about was the dumb stuff all young siblings fight about. You know, "he/she won't let me play," "she got into my makeup," "she bit me," "he/she called me (insert name)," etc. The usual stuff.
So far, as we've gotten older we've gotten closer. Josh has 2 adorable (soon to be 3) daughters who Jo and I absolutely adore. My sister-in-law, Lynda, is pretty awesome too. She's actually quite a bit of the glue that holds the family together since she makes it a priority to schedule things with all of us.
I want my brother to sing at my wedding and my sister to be my maid of honor. These decisions are not being made by default, or because I feel obligated to include them. I've always known that this is what I wanted, because they're important to me and I love them to pieces. They're both smart, sweet, talented goofballs............and they're my goofballs.
Happy belated National Sibling Day!!! Go love on your people.
I'm an "adult," or so I've been told. I do "adult" things, I have an "adult" job, I pay bills, and I drink bourbon and wine. I have great friends and family, an amazing husband, and generally a pretty good life. I have achieved many things, yet so little at the same time. I'm in my 30s, yet I feel more clueless than when I graduated college. This is how I "adult."