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The Sister Story

Brother's foot, taken summer 2009.

Can we have a heart-to-heart? Oh, do let's, please!

I am the eldest child of two. My brother is an intelligent, charming, mature young man who is loved by many and has huge (I mean enormous) potential. He works hard and is taking college courses as a senior in high school and bought his own car earlier this past year. It is hard not to compare myself to an eighteen-year-old who is applying to Brown and Swarthmore, is confident and unafraid and fairly certain of where he wants to be in five or ten years, and who is loved and admired by so, so many.

When I was a teenager, I was a wreck. I struggled with - and still struggle with - the effects of emotional and psychological abuse. I didn't know where I wanted to go or what I wanted to do; I didn't care for money and only dreamt of traveling the world, making art, and connecting with others on a human level. (I still do.) I struggled against my parents and I didn't have a steady job. I applied to a crappy school and had a crappy experience, and I chose to leave after just one year. And here I am three years later, still waiting for something to happen to me.

It's hard when those close to you seem to achieve and surpass dreams and expectations. It's hard when someone who should be looking up to you seems to be looking down from heights you feel you will never achieve. But - please reassure me - we all have our own paths, yes? We each must measure our own successes with our own yardsticks and rulers; we each have something unique and amazing to give to the world and we each must take our own time to figure out exactly what it is. We must never give up and we must always look ahead.

I choose Hope. Do you?

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