I don't remember a time before my younger brother was born. All my childhood memories have him firmly attached to it. That's not the case with my youngest brother though. I have memories in which he is not there. I was six when he was born and I still clearly remember when I was told that I have another baby brother.
My already complete family became 'more complete'. This tiny crying human filled a void none of us knew existed. How do I explain that? That a single person can change the 'character' and dynamics of a family. That each member brings with them their own set of quirks and flaws and endearing traits that the rest of the family adapts to.
My siblings and I have completely different personalities. We have some overlapping behaviours, but mostly we are as different as they come. And yet, our family accommodates all of us-- my father with his penchant for weird cowboy hats that pisses off my mother, my mother with her international cutlery smuggling, my extremely social brother, and my incredibly headstrong other brother who has more borders up than the US, and the ultra-sensitive crybaby me-- we all comfortably fit in there,god knows how. We roll our eyes but secretly cherish each other's weirdness, a weirdness without which we would be less....us.
What I want to say is, if you have ever felt like you are insignificant or replaceable- stop. You are not. You are an oddball without which your family and friends would be less them. Your absence will be that itch that cannot be scratched away. You missing in their lives will be akin to getting stuck mid-sneeze and walking around like you have toothpick stuck in your nose.
You, reading this, you are valued. You are cherished. And without you, a family somewhere would be living incomplete lives.
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