Growing up, I wanted to be exactly like my older brother.  He was the coolest guy I knew and why would I not want to be like him?  He was great at school (without ever seeming to study), baseball seemed to come natural to him and he was always surrounded by a large group of friends.  Somehow my parents only wanted me to be like my sister.  Don’t get me wrong, I loved and admired her too, but I wanted her to be more assertive than she was.  She agreed with everyone.  All the time.  Which was not necessarily a bad thing, but she never seemed to have her own opinions.  And I definitely made my opinions loud and clear.  Which was what my parents disagreed with, whether they would admit it or not. 

After graduating from high school, my brother decided last minute to take a year off instead of going straight to college.  A year to travel, work, exercise, basically do whatever he wanted before taking on the financial burden of paying for college on his own.  I thought my parents were going to lose their minds right then and there. But personally, at fifteen, I thought it was brave he was making a decision he thought was best for himself and not the best decision for everyone else. I knew my parents were nervous I would do the same thing so they started pushing school on me even more than they already had. But I already knew. I already knew the right decision for me and it wasn’t to sit back safely and hide behind my sister and my parents. I knew the right path was to follow my brother and follow my heart. 


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