Not everyone is lucky enough to have siblings, I believe growing up with a brother and sister has had a massive impact on the person I am today, I also had terrible middle child syndrome. My older brother is a gifted artist and very academic, he was the first in our extended family to go to university and eventually into the Armed Forces. My baby sister is almost ten years younger than me and as my mum was well into her career and had two grown up, self-sufficient kids, she could afford bigger and better holidays, gifts, clothes and toys for the little one. I was never going to be the baby, and I wasn’t ever sure I could live up to the academic achievements of my older brother, ages 13 to 17 were particularly horrid for all concerned. While I spent most of that time wondering where I fit in and what my kind of special attributes were I know now, age 29 that I was the glue. I spent most weekend evenings caring for my little sister so my mum and stepdad could go out after a long week at work. I always took her shopping with me, and spent many hours wandering around the museums and art galleries in town trying to keep her entertained. Whenever my brother came home I would be there at the station waiting for him, make sure he had the right change for the bus to get back to our family home and then spend a few hours play fighting and then catching a movie at the local cinema.
We’ve all moved out now pursuing our chosen career paths and caring for our own little families but I’m still the glue. I speak to my brother and sister all the time, more so my sister as despite our age difference we’re into lots of the same things. My brother works all the hours gods sends to pay his astronomical London rent but still manages to give me a call and shout obscenities as soon as I answer. I love having siblings and while we have our ups and downs like everyone else, they will always be my brother and sister and I’ll always be the glue.