This I Believe

Boles - Newtown, Connecticut
Entered on May 29, 2007
Age Group: Under 18
Themes: family, love

I believe that the bond between siblings is unlike any other. I believe that brothers and sisters influence each other in a way that no other could and that they know more about each other than they do themselves.

One summer day, my father dropped the mail onto the wooden island in the center of our kitchen for my brother, five years my elder, and me to pick at. I immediately snatched up TIME Magazine®, as its cover was very colorful and inviting. Inside was an article about how siblings are the main influence in each other’s lives. As I read, I found it a bit strange, until I looked across the room at my brother sitting across from me. We were curled in the same position: our feet tucked underneath our legs and a magazine resting on our laps. I giggled quietly. I already knew I learned more from him than I had from anyone else. He taught me how to sit perfectly on the couch so that I could be comfortable for an extended period of time and reach my food. He taught me that the Discovery Channel is fascinating and watching live surgeries is cool. He taught me there are many things that trigger hysterical fits of laughter. He taught me that the best way to eat a jelly and fluff sandwich is by dipping each piece into a glass of milk. He taught me that no matter how many fights we get into and how much he pretends not to, he will always know me better than anyone and he will never stop caring about me.

April 27th, I drove four hours to the small college town of Ithaca, New York to teach my brother something. For five years he had worked tirelessly to complete his musical, The Count of Monte Cristo, and now the main stage at Ithaca College would be performing a complete production of his work. I sat beside him, anxiously waiting for the show to start. When I looked at the stage and saw the title of the show, a phrase that had become so familiar and obnoxious to me over the past five years, I began to cry. I looked over at my brother, and for a moment he just stared at me, then we both burst out laughing.

At the end, I tried so hard to articulate how proud of him I was through my tears, but my attempts failed. He eventually left me to greet the gushing friends and colleagues waiting for him outside. I drove four hours to Ithaca, New York to teach my brother that even though I couldn’t tell him, I was so proud of him.

I believe that everybody should have someone to teach them the things that are really important and that people should have someone who knows them better than they know themselves. I am lucky enough to have a person like that, and I am luckier still to call him my brother.