This is going to be the last blog post until mid-July because my brother is coming to visit!!! It’s also a bit unfocused and short because I can’t think about it too much without going crazy with excitement and homesickness.
I cannot tell you how excited I am to see him. It has been almost a whole year since I have seen any of my family. I fully expect to burst into tears when he arrives. I also plan on smothering him in enough hugs to give everyone I miss back home at least 5. I don’t think he’s as excited for that part as I am.
Let me tell you a little bit about my brother. If you don’t know me too well, you probably don’t know that I have 6 siblings. I have an older sister, two older brothers, a younger half-sister, and two step-sisters. With that big a family, the large age differences, and the crazy different family dynamics, we have some strange sibling relationships. I love all of my siblings. There was a time that I chose favorites, but as I have grown up, I’ve realized the value in each of my relationships with my siblings and I’m happy to have relationships with them all. I’m sure I will find a reason to talk about my other siblings in the future, but this post will just be about Nick.
Nick and I have always just clicked (at least I think so). I don’t remember a time where we fought or a time where I didn’t feel like he respected me and was fully there to support me. He has been the most helpful when it came to college. We would sit in his living room for hours talking about different paths I could take, different colleges to transfer to, and different degrees and jobs that I’d be good at. I still think he would love it if I switched to engineering and I’m positive we would have great discussions about math, but I also never felt like he didn’t support the paths that I chose.
He didn’t blink an eye when I asked him to be my power of attorney and take care of all of my crazy stuff at home (and I asked him right after he spent 12 hours driving to pick me and all my shit up from Montana). He also spent as much time and probably more money than I did preparing to come here last summer. I’m pretty sure I will owe him like $10,000 by then end of this. He’s the first person I called when I got evicted and the person who will call me when I’m having crazy emotional episodes of homesickness. He has heard me cry more than anyone besides my mom at this point and I’m pretty sure that that’s just been in the last year. But he’s been so helpful when I feel lost here. He helps me put everything in perspective and realize that I still have lots that I can accomplish here.
Since Nick is 13 years older than me and was the one watching me while my mom worked crazy hours when I was little, I grew up thinking of him more like a dad, than a brother. I remember him teaching me to ride a bike, and watching Saved by the Bell with me. We had great times. For a while, I even thought I would ask him to walk me down the aisle at my future wedding. Now I don’t want someone giving me away at my wedding. What am I? A piece of meat to be handed off to another male who will then own me? But anyway, that’s a tangent. Then he got busy with his own life and when we started spending more time together I felt like our relationship just gradually changed to being really great friends. I feel like I can tell him anything (and do) and I have no fear that he will judge me or react in a way I don’t expect because I know that he loves, respects, and supports me in everything I do. I couldn’t have a better person cheering me on from my corner.
So, naturally, I am SO SO SO excited to see him and spend two glorious weeks hanging out, exploring a bit of Namibia, and a bit of Botswana. Of course, preparing for his trip, I’ve gotten even more homesick since this is such a tangible bridge between my two lives. I’m also sure that I will be even more homesick once he leaves, but I’m OK with that, because I get to see my big brother in a week!!!