Being a Big Sister 

My name is Sarahana. I always wanted to be a big, big sister to take care of my little sibling. I wanted to play all the time with the little one. I wanted to give all my toys, clothes, shoes, and bike. I felt whatever I had also belonged to the younger one. When I was in Kindergarten, I wished for a baby sister as a Christmas gift. Standing in front of the whole school, I proudly said, “I wished for a baby sister.” 

My Parents smiled when they knew what my wish was. My Grandmother, who had come to visit us from Nepal, also was delighted to hear my wish. 

Next year, my mom’s tummy started being more prominent, popping out day by day. I was happy because my wish would come true soon. 

Finally, my wish was half true. I was a big sister to my newborn baby brother Saral. I went to see him at the hospital. I was amazed when I looked at him. He was so cute and tiny. His face was so small, even smaller than the palm of my hand. His fingers were tiny as baby carrots. 

I was scared to touch him. But my dad placed him on my lap. Oh, I loved this guy, my brother, at first sight. I wanted to bring him home, but the Doctor said he had to be in the hospital for nine days. During that time, I missed my mom, missed talking to her, had to cut off the yummy food of her cooking. I terribly missed her.

After my mom and dad came home, I thought my brother would play with me. But Saral was always sleeping and crying if he wasn’t pooping. On one side, I was happy that my baby brother was home. But on the other, I was unhappy because my brother couldn’t play hide and seek with me, run with me, or play Lego. 

It was summer. I was home. I had nobody to play with except Pritha, my best friend next door. Pritha was in her Day Home and couldn’t come to my house constantly. My brother won’t help me. My mom said that he would play with me when he grew older.

Saral is now three years old and still doesn’t play properly. He takes my toys and runs. Sometimes, he picks up some throws away, and I can’t find them. He eats my gum without telling me. Saral takes my Tablet too. He even bites me and hits me. 

Once, he bit me so hard on my pinkie finger, it bled. I wanted to bite Saral back, but my parents said that violence was never a solution. So, I had to yell at him: “stop! it hurts.” At another time, he ripped off a book I had borrowed from school. I was so scared that my teacher would make me pay. But she said, “that’s ok.” The teacher cautioned me to be careful next time and not put books in places where children can reach. 

Once, he got mad at my mom and smashed a plate. He didn’t let my mom attend my Christmas recital where everyone else’s mom was there. My mom couldn’t come because Saral was a teeny-tiny baby. 

It is tough being a big sister. I literally have to let go of so much annoying stuff my brother does. My dad says it is just a phase that will pass quickly.

I was not only annoyed but also jealous of my brother. When he was a tiny little cute boy, he got all attention of my parents. I was so jealous that I didn’t want to share my parents with him. Before Saral came into our lives, I used to have all the attention of my parents. I was the center of my parent’s world. Until he was born, I felt that I was the only one who would rule the house. Suddenly, in the flick of a second, my position changed. I was put down to the second position. Everybody who came to visit Saral adored him: “Oh, how cute he is.” They brought gifts only for him. But when Saral got money, my mom would say that I could share with him. He didn’t have a Piggybank. I had one, so I could put some of his money on mine. That was one advantage of being a big sister.

Nowadays, it is entirely different. My brother has started to play with me. He builds Lego with me. Saral jumps on my bed. I like it when he dances on “Five little monkeys.” He watches TV with me. Saral loves coloring. He has even done some paint on the wall of our living room. 

Saral is cute. People in the park often come up to us and say, “What a cute kid.” 

Sometimes, when I am sad, Saral comes and hugs me. There are a lot of good things about Saral. He sometimes plays Tag with me or else. I give him a piggyback ride. These days, I feel lucky to have Saral as my brother because my life would have been so hard during the Covid-19 pandemic without him. He makes me laugh, weep, cry, and laugh again.

This year Saral is going to Pre-K school, and I am going to the fifth grade. We did some back-to-school shopping for him and me. We got shoes and other new school stuff. I am happy for him. We also celebrated Saral’s third birthday in June. I co-organized his birthday party with my best friend, Pritha. We cooked and baked. We made an art garland for him. We all wished him “Happy Birthday.” My family loves him very much. I love him a lot. I am so happy to be Saral’s big sister.

Saral means ‘simplicity’ or ‘easy going’ in the Nepali language. I want my brother to be simple yet strong and resilient. I want him to be happy in life. I want Saral to be my friend forever, even after he gets married and has kids. I thank God for the beautiful Christmas gift ever, my brother. 

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