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Little Sisters
by Monica Murphy




Little sisters are brats till someone notices them. I'm not sure how it is in the North, but I have hard cold facts about it here in the South. All I have to do is look at my three children.

I admit when I was young (fifteen) I envisioned a perfect little family. A wonderful husband and four kids in this order--boy, girl, boy, girl. At the time I was a self-serving young lady who thought I would get everything I wanted. Think again.

Fast forward twenty-five years. I am now the single mother of three children in this order--boy, boy, girl. Except for the day the boys welcomed their newborn sister home, they have been trying to talk me into sending her back.

When I brought my baby girl home from the hospital her brothers fell in love. Joshua was seven and thought she looked pretty. He quickly lost interest though because it so happened she came home Easter Sunday. There were more important things to do at the moment -- like hunt eggs.

Jeremy fell in love. At two and a half he thought Julia was prettier than any doll he had ever seen.

I again reverted to childhood visions of a lovely little family. Medical problems dictated I stop with Julia but that was okay. My family was complete.

Then one night Dad got out the video camera. Julia was seven months old and Jeremy was three, and yes, it's true--we have it on tape, she turned into a B-R-A-T. Jeremy was innocently playing with a little firetruck and Julia crawled over and took it away from him. Now, even a little boy of three can sense the frailty of a baby and you can see Jeremy's frustration. He didn't hurt her, but you could see the change. She was now the enemy, this baby sister who was a brat.

Over the years they all took turns tormenting each other. Don't ever try it if you aren't a sibling though because my three hostile warriors will team up and turn on you. We lived on an Air Force base and right outside our back door was the park. Julia was five and out there playing with Jeremy when a boy of twelve tried to pull up her dress. Jeremy tore into him. When the father came and complained, thinking it was our older son of twelve and saw it was the younger one and heard the story, he turned his attention to his own discipline problem.

Joshua went to basic at eighteen and then to the war in Iraq. He left behind a little brother in junior high and a sister in grade school. Puberty has a way of making changes though, and when he returned he found a high school boy an inch taller than he and a junior high cheerleader who was being noticed by (God forbid!) boys!

Dad lives several states away now, but two older brothers are apparently worse than having parents. No really, just ask Julia. A boy calls the house for her and gets the third degree. She yells at her oldest brother, "You're not my dad!" And he yells back, "I'm second in command!"

Jeremy's friends are noticing, too. One or two of them drift into the family room and watch television with her. I actually admire them. They aren't bothered by Jeremy's grumbling.

The funny thing is, Julia hasn't discovered boys quite as fast as they have her, and if Julia's "What are YOU doing in here?" doesn't scare them off, then one or two may have potential. In about ten years. Maybe.

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Write: Monica Murphy

Monica is a member of Mike's Writing Workshop, Our World of Writing,
Texas Writers, and IWVPA@yahoogroups.com.
She is a published writer and has a novel (From War to Wishes) currently under submission and contract offered.
A resident of Texas, Monica is the mother of three children.

Read another of Monica's stories at USADEEPSOUTH: Unknown Heroes


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