Today is my baby brother’s birthday. This is us:

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He’s a lot taller now. Like as in, taller than me. And he’s now sixteen. Today he turns 16. So in his honor, I’d like to write him a letter. Grab a kleenux everyone. Here it goes…

Dear Nathan,

You grew up too fast. I was pretty sure yesterday was the day you were born. I remember it clearly. Grammy was watching us while mom & dad were at the hospital. Another brother. That made four of us. Four of us and we each thought we were an only child. Our poor mother. Your sisters already considered ourselves to be your second mother. We couldn’t wait to play with you, to hold you, to feed you.

You grew up too fast. Next thing I knew you were walking. Gosh, you were our baby and already you were up on your feet making your own way in the world. We dragged you into everything. Unfortunately since you were the youngest you also got talked into doing the worst things. Like the one (or more) times we dressed you up as the groom in our play weddings. Sorry about that. We feel sheepish.

You grew up too fast. Next thing I knew you had your own mind and didn’t want to do what we told you. I knew how to take care of that. I called it my sisterly duty. I pinned you down and tickled you until you couldn’t breathe. Remember those good times? I do. Man we had fun. Right?

You grew up too fast. I went away to college one day and left you as a little boy. I came back and you had a mohawk. WHAT THE..??? You were cool and girls thought you were cute. Excuse me ladies but that’s MY brother and only the prettiest, funniest, and nicest need apply. I will physically maim all others. I got married, moved away, only saw you once or twice a year. You got taller and taller. Your voice got deep. You sound just like dad now. In fact, when I call sometimes you impersonate him. I can’t tell the difference.

You grew up too fast. Some crazy person gave you car keys and a driver’s license. I would say that’s ridiculous, but the fact is you are probably a better driver than me. And I have a license. Apparently they’ll give one to just about anybody these days. You have lots of interests, like movies and music and good food. Before too long you’ll be making plans for college. Then you’ll meet some pretty young lady. And you’ll do things like buy her flowers and pay for her meals. Oh gosh and then you’ll get married, and have kids that look just like you. And they’ll grow up fast too and I’ll just sit here feeling old.

It all just happened so fast.

I’m so proud of you Nathan and I love you so much. I’m so glad you’re my brother. I hope your birthday is the best yet, and that they just keep on getting better and better.

Happy birthday.

Love,

E

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