The one where we all grow up

26 Jun

My little brother leaves tomorrow for the United States Air Force Academy. We all knew he’d be leaving, but I can see my parents aren’t ready. And I’m not either. It’s a different type of feeling that’s hard to put into words. We aren’t sad he’s going. On the contrary, we’re really proud and excited for him.

I thought maybe it was because we’ll see him less often, but that’s not it either. We’ve all spent time apart at one point or another. I think what it comes down to is his departure marks a new chapter in the story of our family. This is the chapter where we all grow up.

Sure, my sister and I have been out of college a few years and both have steady jobs and steady boyfriends. But we always knew we could come back home, hang out with our little Joey and feel like kids again. Things are different now; my baby brother is an adult. Yes, we’ll still have awesome times together (and I’ll still act like a kid), but it won’t ever be like it was.

I’m not saying it’s a bad thing. In the next few years we’ll each be finding ourselves and starting our own families. It’s exciting and scary and wonderful. And that’s what the weird feeling is – change. Maybe we don’t feel ready for it, but we are.

So to Joey: Thank you for being my inspiration to dream big. You truly are an amazing person and bring so much joy to our family. Never stop following your dreams. We’ll all be rooting for you, kid.

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