Dear Middle Child

            

Dear Middle Child,

I see you.

It sucks not being the oldest (hello privileges) and not being the youngest (hello baby). You’re caught in the middle and you’ve had to carve your own title in our crazy family. You remind us often that your older brother is cherished, and your younger sister is spoiled. Where does that leave you?  You think you fly under the radar, often unnoticed, but it’s not true. Far from true. Who you are, what you do and how you act speaks louder than any words and your visibility in our family is known, welcomed, and valued.  You are the middle, the best part of a sandwich.

I see you.

Want to know a crazy statistic? 52% of our Presidents have been middles. That means you are primed for greatness and have strength’s you may not even be aware of yet.  I remind you all the time that you would be a great judge. Why? Because you are an amazing negotiator and chief peacekeeper. You have mad skills when it comes to evaluating a situation and seeing all sides of an issue. You are fair and open minded, and you don’t take crap from people.  Plus, you would love nothing more than throwing your brother and sister out of your courtroom if they acted out of order.  Nothing would make you happier than hearing them refer to you as “Your Honor”. You are the middle, the best part of a Tootsie Pop.

I see you.

You aren’t much a talker and that’s okay. We’ve found other ways to connect and I’ve learned to appreciate your silence.  From the very beginning, when you were 5 years old, you told me we could play “the quiet game” in the car when it was just the two of us.  We rode together, in stillness, and it was okay with you. Your cup was filled. Idle chit chat isn’t a gift of yours, but I’ve learned to enjoy just being with you, without speaking a word.  For a motormouth like me, it’s been a challenge, but you have helped me slow down and just be.  I realize now that not everything needs to be said and love’s sweetest meanings are often unspoken. Although it is funny—for being a “non-talker”, you sure do text, talk, and Snap your friends all the time.  I may rethink my strategies and open a Snapchat account, so we can communicate and stay connected. While I’m at it, maybe I’ll Snap your friends and say hi too. You are the middle, the best part of a jelly donut.

I see you.

You are funny. Like belly laugh, pee-your-pants funny.  No one makes me laugh like you do.  You are quick, witty, and insightful. So much of what you say lets me know that nothing in our house gets passed you.  You are keenly observant but slow to comment.  When you talk, I always listen because I trust what you have to say.  You might feel lost in the family shuffle sometimes, but our family would not be the same without you. You are the middle, the best part of an Oreo cookie.

I see you.

You are stealth and can be a little sneaky, because you think no one is looking.  I watch you a little closer because you’re so smart and independent that I worry you will pull one over on me.  You don’t ask for much and you “seem” easy (except when you are hangry– then look out). You keep me on my toes.  You are the middle, the best part of an apple pie.

I see you.

You are so resourceful. I never worry about you figuring things out. Without even telling me, you started to do your own laundry. It was a good six months before I even noticed—maybe because you used to pile your dirty clothes until they created a mountain high enough to climb.  You impressed me with your ability to tackle a job I struggle with and hate to this day. You manage money well (better than your brother and sister actually) and you are responsible and sensible.  I’m sure if they borrow money from you when you are older, you will be kind and offer it at a reduced interest rate.  Almost nightly, you sit at our dining room table, grinding away at your homework, and rarely do you ask for help. Your ability to problem solve and handle things is a level of calm I have never known. You are the middle, the best part of a burger.

I see you.

I’m sorry you were not the first child to walk or graduate from high school in our family, but your accomplishments mean just as much. We celebrate you and your success as much as we do your siblings. Please cut me some slack if I don’t have pictures of all your successes though— we can always photo shop if we must.  I promise to do your baby book, one day. You are the middle, the best part of a burrito.

I see you.

You are tough. You grew up playing with your older brother and his friends and they didn’t show you any mercy.  You held your own and you didn’t get pushed around.  You developed thick skin and the ability to adapt to any environment.  You are patient (except with your little sister), kind (except to your little sister) and helpful (except with your little sister).  You make us proud. You are the middle, the best part of a good book.

Sweet middle of mine, please know we see you, we love you and we are blessed to have you.  I know it must be challenging to figure out who you are and what your role in our family is.  Rest assured, your role is important and necessary. Being the middle means, you are the core of us, the center of our family, the nucleus of what makes us whole.  You are needed, adored and you have brought balance to our lives. You are the middle, the one who brings us all closer.  While it may not feel you get all my time or attention, you always have all of my heart.

 

 

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