To My Sweet Middle Child,
When you are always the one who has to share a room because there is one brother above and one brother below. When you sit in the backseat because your older brother is bigger than you and he beats you to the car. When you wear your older brother’s hand-me-down sweatshirts because they “still have plenty of wear left.” When you share with your younger brother because he just wants to be like you. When you close your eyes and say a prayer every single time you see an ambulance or hear a firetruck go by. Even when you think that I don’t, I see you.
Being in the middle can be tough. Sometimes you get less of me because I am worried about your older brother making good grades, and good choices, and setting a good example for his younger siblings. Often times, I have to spend more time with the younger one because he is still learning to do math, and about subjects and predicates, and has to work on his spelling words. He needs more of me than you do. But when you are quietly doing your homework alone, eating a snack, and working as hard as you can. I see you.
You may not realize it, but you are the most important sibling to each of your brothers. They both look to you as a mentor, confidant, and friend. Your older brother has known you the longest. You are his very best friend and he will tell you his deepest and darkest secrets. He looks to you for advice. He values your opinion. And the baby brother, he looks up to you. He loves sharing your room because he gets to stay up later and he has access to your Dog Man collection. He thinks you dress and act cool. He wants glasses so he can look like you. It takes a special person to switch hats and be so many things for different people. When you share your things and your time. I see you.
When you are feeling unloved, underappreciated, and generally underwhelmed. When you think that no one has it as tough as you. When no one understands you because they don’t carry the weight of being an older and younger brother. When your feelings are hurt. When all you want to do is spend five mintues alone in your own space. When you are trying your hardest to keep it all together, but you just need to cry. I see you.
When you are laughing at a great joke. When you come running out of school with a smile on your face. When you get the remote first and get to decide what to watch on TV. When you get a great grade on a test you studied so hard for. When you push your glasses up on your wrinkly little nose. When you smile and give me a hug for no reason. I see you.
Thank you for being our peacemaker and our voice of reason. Thank you for making sandwiches while I am on a call or working under a deadline. Thank you for carrying down a laundry basket or grabbing the trash and taking it out. Thank you for watching TV with your brother when you’d much rather be playing Minecraft with your friends. Thank you for always remembering to take a shower and to brush your teeth. Thank you for being agreeable and kind. And thank you for being so special to all of us. We need you. We love you. We appreciate you. We’d be lost without you. And never forget, we all see you.