Being an elder sister is the most amazing status in life at least in India. You can boss your brother, rag his friends and every little gift you get comes to you first for choice. Even after you get married your brother(s) keep giving you gifts for Rakhi, ‘bhaidooz’ etc. When you have kids, he is the ‘mama'( uncle) and by Indian traditions he still has to keep giving your kids gifts…mama even marries off her niece, what fun :)! Basically , younger brothers have a bit of inequity in relations.
You tend to take him for granted and then one day he gets married and you realise that he is no more only your younger brother, but someone’s husband, somebody’s dad and many other relationships spring up. He tends to get so tied in his new role that sometimes you miss the candid relationship and the bond you shared with him.
It takes a while for you to realise that the relationship you shared is no more a single variable,the new variable, your sister-in-law is a pert of it too and all this is a part of a very complex algorithm. The sooner you accept that, the better your chances are on salvaging the relationship. It took me a while too! My brother was my baby, I was always cajoling him and mentoring him. Till one day he got married and matured overnight. I couldn’t even crack jokes at him without a stern gaze from my mom or a raised eyebrow from my dad.
Coming back to the relationship, as years pass we get busy in our respective lives. Luckily, we have festivals like Rakhi and Bhaidooz where we do get to celebrate the bond atleast once a year. Once a year, I feel that importance revived and trust me I make most of it. A lot of you reading this would relate to me on how the relationship has changed and evolved after you and your brother got married.
Today, however, I just want to remember the fun times we shared and brother(s) if you’re reading this I hope you can remember them too.
Some of my interesting memories are when he was born and I was constantly told not to touch him, kiss him…and so on. So one day I decided to carry him and run away from home. At 3, you don’t believe in logical reasoning! Luckily, I was traced in the neighbourhood and my parents allowed me to play with him from then on. I left them with no choice, they always had to see things my way ;)!
Another one, when he didn’t share his toys with me and tried to physically fight me. How could I take bullying ? So at 5 years, I gave it back to him. So much so, that the poor guy( 2 then) couldn’t open his eye for one day. I supported feminism even then!
One of our uncles was based abroad and in those days it was huge. He would get us Mars, Snickers and Toblerones, a rarity. My brother, the glutton he was, would finish everything almost instantly and then he would eye mine. He would cry his heart out and then my mom would tell me to share as he was still a baby. A baby? Pretty shrewd one, I tell you! Master at drama!
I once asked one of my cousin brothers, when he was five, what he wanted for his birthday? I had just started earning( I did a small stint in a school as a pre-primary teacher ), so like a big sister I wanted to gift him something nice. Guess what he wanted? A computer! In those days it was expensive to buy one and I was just earning a very meagerly salary. I managed to somehow get him off-track and pledged never to ask such an open-ended question again.
And so we all grew up, having these fun’ loving moments. I never realised the strength or importance of this bond, till I left home and travelled to another city for pursuing my graduation. That Rakhi, I remember, getting all emotional and missing my brother(s). True to human nature we value things that we don’t have. And from that day I think our bond grew stronger every year. I am sure many of you have gone through changes in your relationships over the years. The equation might keep changing but I feel the bond can never break. Somewhere in our roots we are connected. It’s a little bit of childhood in us that can never be lost :)!
We would love it if you also share with us the bitter-sweet stories of this unique bond, and click a selfie or share any photo with your darling brother or sister and post it on Facebook or Instagram at the Jabong page and use the hashtag #selfiewithsibling.