5 Reasons Why Being The Eldest Is Difficult

I’ve heard a lot about how life is generally kinda difficult for the middle child. She (I’m basically talking about girls, but I guess this is applicable to boys too) has to outdo or atleast match the achievements of the eldest child and, at the same time, set an example for the youngest. And then, there are (jealousy) issues about lack of attention, importance and…most significantly – lack of love (according to the middle child: apparently, parents exhaust all of this on their first child and don’t have enough for the other kids). And as if this weren’t enough, she also has to deal with the normal teenage & adolescent problems that are part of growing up!

OK, now, don’t assume I’m a middle child. I’m not. But I can very well imagine what they have to live through. Anyway, what I intend to emphasize here is: it’s super-hard being the eldest child as well!  I’m the eldest of three girls. And as much as I enjoy it, there are so many instances when I wish I didn’t have to go through some stuff just because I’m the eldest. Trust me, it is definitely hard being the eldest. I love my sisters. Hell, yes! They mean the world to me. I suppose having them is what makes this a little easier for me.

So, why do I say being the first-born has its problems? We’re getting to that.

1) Since I’m the eldest, parents/relatives/elders expect a lot from me – responsibility and maturity while taking decisions, living life, doing anything; doing things right (so that my sisters can learn from me, yeah right!!), so on. To be frank, I think it’s too much burden on me and, sometimes, it’s hard to live upto their expectations.

2) I’m supposed to know everything. I’m supposed to lead my sisters on the right path and I’d have to know everything if I’m supposed to guide them properly. Nobody seems to care about what I know; all they can do is point out what I don’t know!

3) I know that every decision I take will have a direct impact on my family. And I can’t let it be a negative impact. That’s enough reason to worry about what I’m doing, whether it’s the right thing or not, blah blah. Frankly speaking, I HATE IT! As if I don’t have enough to worry about already! I can’t take a single decision without thinking more than twice about it. Yes, I don’t want to hurt my parents. But I wish they wouldn’t expect so much from me, that they would just let me explore life and live it, even if it means falling down or failing once in a while. With all these expectations, there’s too much on my mind. And there are times when I wish I could just do something to take it all off my head! I’m going through a similar phase right now. And it sucks!

4) This particular point is what triggered me to write this post right now – my siblings think I’m the only one important to dad and mom. OK, I understand why they feel this way. I’m the first child and I happened to be bright at school; so, my parents always had a kind of pride in me and some special affection. And now that I’ve been (mostly) away for the past 3 years, they tend to show a little extra love. So, you see, I know why my sisters feel the way they do. But they don’t try to see that dad and mom love them, too… All they see is the extra affection I get. I’ve tried to make them understand but in vain. I don’t blame them. Just hope that, someday, they will see what I was trying to tell them.

5) Sometimes, dad tells me certain decisions and asks for my suggestions or just wants to know what I think. Because, I guess, he thinks I’m old enough to be included in the serious decisions of the family. But I go blank when he does that. Half of the time, I don’t know why exactly he is doing what he’s doing and I don’t know what to tell him as suggestion/thought. I go blank, totally! When that is the last thing expected of me. Ah, expectations again!! Sigh!

So, you see…it isn’t all that easy being the eldest child. There should be an Elder Child Syndrome too. Or maybe there is (already googling). I admit it has its ups…but the downs are inevitably hard! Anyway, I bet the little brat (aka my little sis) will soon be coming up with 5 reasons why it’s hard being the youngest! 😛 Inspite of all this, if I’m given a choice to decide who I want to be in my next lifetime (assuming I’ll have one), I’d still want to be born as the person I’m right now (eldest and everything included), without a second thought!

A Dose of Random Nonsense

This year is going to be phenomenal. Everyone’s been asking me what I’ll be doing next (after college) and I keep giving the same vague reply of job, work, blah blah. To be honest, I don’t know how things will turn out to be. Even though I’m looking forward to this new phase, it does get a little scary, at times. When I think of where I will be, some 5 months from now, all I come up with is a hazy picture with no clear idea! Mom keeps bugging me with questions of what I’m planning to do, she doesn’t seem to be placated by my vague response about work and stuff. Typical of moms, I guess. I’m so glad Dad is giving me the space and freedom I need right now. He is fine with whatever decision I take, as long as I’m sure about it. And I love him for that. I adore him for giving me the liberty to choose what I want to do, for acknowledging that I’m capable enough to decide what I want in life. 🙂 Sometimes, that is all you need…your dear ones to trust you with your decisions and life. Though, I don’t know how Dad will react to the decision of colouring my hair in some crazy shades. 🙂

Last day, I was talking to Merlin about all the many things we don’t know about – the universe, its workings, natural phenomena, origins, history, … (well, you get the idea!). I have been studying for the past 17 years and I still have such a GREAT lot to learn. There’s so much I don’t know. Doesn’t it kinda amaze you and leave you in awe? I feel that way every time I think about what I don’t know. When I consider the unknown, what I know pales in comparison! I was always into knowing more; learning, rather than studying. And over these years, I’ve noticed that even though I may have forgotten all that I studied at school and college, I still remember all the odd facts that I’ve accumulated in my head. In fact, I’m still picking up such odd bits of information, every now and then. 🙂 Kinda makes you wonder why you bothered studying at all!!

It’s been a boring, lazy day. I did nothing except read some blogs, talk a little…and then write this post (which I think is absolute nonsense, because it doesn’t make sense to me!). This is what happens when I’m going through a dull day, feeling dead and bored! 🙂 Hope you are having a better time out there!

For Dad…

Sometimes, you tend to take a lot of things for granted. Your family, good friends, your comforts in life, so on. I love my family  – my dad, mom and sisters. But more often than not, I take them for granted. Yeah, I love them a lot…but I don’t always think about it or feel lucky (except when I see less fortunate ones). However, life has this amazing way of coming up with situations or instances that open my eyes to the wonderful family I’m blessed with. Something of that sort happened recently. I was just struck by the realization and overcome by this overwhelming happiness.

My parents aren’t exactly what I would call broad-minded. Of course, they are very much so, when compared to so many other people I know. But not as much as I would like them to be. 😀 I mean, they wouldn’t really be able to understand my perceptions about fulfilling my purpose in life, religion (HELL!!NO!!), relationships, marriage, so on. Though I love them a hell lot, I’m not very close with them on a personal level. And I tell my friends about how my parents won’t be able to understand me. But this recent incident just made me realize that I haven’t been able to understand my parents completely, particularly my dad. He knows me a lot more than I gave him credit for. I’m really surprised and of course, so damn happy. 🙂

Well…this is what happened. I have been thinking a lot about doing something in journalism (print media). I would love to work in a magazine, something creative, something I will enjoy and love doing. So, I have been checking out some possible courses and when I came across something I liked, I e-mailed my sister telling her about it. I told her to talk to dad about it & give him the details. I knew he would say something about how I keep changing my decisions, jumping from one to the other, playing with my future, blah blah (you know what I’m talking about!). I wasn’t expecting any kind of positive response from him. The maximum I could expect, I guessed, would be the usual “Let’s see” (which happens to be my dad’s favourite response to anything and everything, ie. if he doesn’t say NO straightaway! :P).

So, next day, I was reading my sister’s reply. When she got to the part about talking to dad, she said that she told dad about my journalism thing. When she heard his reply, she said her reaction was ‘WTF’!!!! I assumed he must have said something about how irresponsible and immature I’m being, can’t stick to a decision… in short, the usual stuff. I continued reading the mail for details of his reaction. This was his reaction, as quoted by my sis in the mail: “She should write and think of, maybe, getting her books published… instead she wants to go for journalism!” I can imagine my sister, standing there, open-mouthed, listening to him say that!!! 🙂 She asked him if he didn’t have a problem with that. He replied, asking why he should have a problem…he said that I should write and become a good writer someday. That was the last thing I expected him to say! He has always encouraged me to write but I never thought he would want me to pursue a career in writing. Parents mostly don’t think art is a field which ensures enough job security and opportunities to prosper for their children and don’t encourage a career in those lines. So, I was honestly surprised at my dad’s reaction. And…extremely HAPPY! 🙂 It felt so damn good knowing that I can always count on him to support my decisions in life.

I thought I knew him…but now, I realize I have never been able to know him completely, not yet, atleast. This incident made me see how I have taken him for granted all this while…never seeing that he understood me well enough to know what I want, what I will be happy doing. I cannot explain the admiration I feel for him… It’s like, suddenly, I have begun to actually ‘see’ him, like I never saw him truly till this day. I feel a deep sense of respect and love for him… for having been there for me all this while, for having given me the freedom to choose what I want in life, for loving me so much, even after all the crap I have done (which have, I’m sure, hurt him a lot!)…basically, for being the dad that he is!!! 🙂

To dad: I hope you read this someday. I want you to know how grateful I’m to you for all that you have done, are doing and will be doing (I presume) for me. You are the best! I don’t know if I’ll succeed but I will certainly try to be a good daughter, though I doubt I will ever be the kind of daughter you deserve to have. 🙂 I know I have hurt you a lot more than you admit, I’m sorry for all that. I love you a lot for knowing & understanding me, letting me be what I am…and for being what you are… and actually, all I want to let you know is: I love you a lot. You are the best dad ever! And I’m the luckiest daughter ever! 🙂 Love you.

Here’s to all dads, for their undying, unconditional love and support!! 🙂

[I guess this means I’ll have to write something for mom, very soon. I can already hear the phone ringing… 😀 :D]