Whenever anyone asks me whether or not I have siblings I never cease to be stunned. I always respond with a quiet “What?” when really I mean “What?! How could you not know I have siblings?!” It is a simple question with an even simpler answer: yes. I could even eliminate the bonus questions of how many siblings do you have or are they older or younger by saying, yes I have two older sisters. You are probably wondering “What is wrong with this girl? People are just trying to make polite conversation with her. How could they possibly know she has siblings if they just met her? She could benefit from calming down.” The truth is, I probably could benefit from calming down, but that is not what is important right now.
The reason I am always shocked whenever someone asks if I have siblings is because I was always around people who knew I have two sisters. I went to a high school where for my first two years I was referred to as “The Little Milan” or “Vanessa’s Little Sister” or “Vanessa—oh, I’m sorry, you’re Vivian!” (Side note: this was not just a student issue. Even teachers referred to me as The Little Milan). When my sisters graduated from high school, I realized that people still referred to me by my sisters’ names. Even if I was alone, I was still hearing “Oh, hi girlS!” or “Laurene—Vanessa—no wait—Vivian!” It is incredibly demeaning and irritating to not be your own person. However, don’t fret, readers! There is hope! When you go to college, there are not going to be many people who knew who you once were at home. You can start all over or you can work out the kinks in who you are now or as cliché as it is, you can even find out the person you want to be.
While I’m away from home, I miss my sisters a lot. But, in all honesty, it’s a relief when people ask if I have siblings. It means that they will not refer to me as the “Little Milan” or if they call me by the wrong name, I’ll know it’s because that person just met me. You can be your own person. It’s not an easy task and often times it requires leaving the places you know and love, but believe me, it is worth it.