Being an older sibling is like a trial run of parenthood. Being the older sister to a 13-year-old, I've always felt like I've had an extra shadow — a cute, little mini-me, who I wanted to see me as both a friend and a teacher.
To this day, my parents still get annoyed when I try to "parent" my little sister, but I keep doing it because despite what any parent may say, we older siblings feel a huge sense of responsibility when it comes to our shadows.
I may not have brought my sister into the world, but I sure am going to help her get through it.
Being the middle child, I have the unique opportunity to be able to teach my sister things my older sister isn't allowed to teach her because she has to be the actual role model. Middle children have some wiggle room in the maturity department.
I like to think of myself as the sibling who gets to have the most fun, since Mom and Dad are always focused on the first-born and the baby.
It's annoying most of the time, but when it comes to passing knowledge on to my younger sister, being the middle child is the best thing I could ever ask for.
Mom and Dad have to provide structure. The oldest sister has to set the mature example since she's responsible for two younger siblings. The youngest sister doesn't have to worry about anything because, let's face it: The baby is basically Harry Potter, the chosen one.
And, then, there's me. I'm the middle child who will most likely be the aunt who gets her nieces and nephews drunk for the first time because she's just that cool.
I've grown up to be a very carefree, carpe diem kind of person. There's not much I can't handle because being the middle child is synonymous with having a huge target strapped to your back that says, "Blame me!!"
But, I am very lucky in the sense that I get to be a best friend to my baby sister and teach her things she wouldn't necessarily learn from our parents. This spans from things as simple as how to show off your boobs to how to handle the most painful forms of rejection.
Here are seven other pieces of wisdom my parents can't/won't teach:
1. A Clean Room, Red Nails And Freshly Done Eyebrows Will Help You Take Over The World
It's a proven fact among women that having your sh*t together makes you more productive.
When I have the trifecta of a perfectly organized bedroom, a killer manicure and eyebrows on fleek, the world is mine to control. Anything I set my mind to can and will happen, mainly because I have the adrenaline necessary to put it in play.
When you look great, you feel great. And, when you feel great, great things happen. So, baby sis, clean your room, get that mani/pedi and a fresh eyebrow wax, and you'll find it nearly impossible to hold yourself back, due to your supreme level of fabulousness.
2. Revealing Victoria's Actual Secret
Victoria has been keeping her secret for a pretty long time, but your big sister has the deets. The secret is, you want to invest in the secretive bras; they're the best you'll ever find.
Despite the fact that it's a very mainstream, overpriced store, there's no denying your two favorite girls will have a lifetime of support with the help of Victoria. And, the 5 for $25 underwear deal? An absolute steal.
3. Don't Watch Netflix In The Morning
It's a trap. An inescapable trap. Just take my word on this one and don't do it.
4. You Don't Have To Be Nice All The Time
One of my biggest pet peeves is people who put up fronts in order for people to like them. It's taken me years to be the confident, outspoken and direct person I am.
The truth is, there will always be someone who doesn't like you. No one can please everyone, but everyone should be confident enough in themselves to not give a sh*t about what other people say. If you don't like a person, let him or her know.
In the long run, you'll feel better for weeding out the unnecessary pain and struggle and the others will appreciate your tenacity and ability to say what's on your mind.
If you're naturally a meaner person, that's okay. Just make sure you learn how to control your temper because there's a fine line between speaking your mind at the right time and being an assh*le.
5. Honesty Isn't Always The Best Policy
Mom and Dad will always tell you 100 percent honesty is vital. In my honest opinion, however, there will be times in your life when protecting the truth is more important than speaking it.
In your life, you will learn things about your family and friends and the truth of those facts may be more harmful than helpful. As you grow up, it's important to learn when the truth is needed, and when it's time to protect the feelings of those you love.
6. You Can't Change People's Flaws
This is one of those moments when keeping the truth is better than revealing it. Everyone you know and everyone you will meet is flawed.
We all live our lives in gray areas, despite the perpetuated belief that life is lived in black and white. As you grow closer to people, you'll begin to learn their flaws and you'll want to help them change those imperfections. The problem is this: You can't change a person.
This even applies to our parents. They are very stuck in their ways, but you have to love them for who they are, not harp on what they're not.
People only change when they feel the need to do so deep within themselves and reach points of self-actualization. While you could catalyze that change, the odds of it happening are slim to none. It's much better to learn to accept a person for who he or she is — flaws and all.
If that means you have to learn to live with the fact that your best friend doesn't believe in deodorant, then c'est la vie. The friend will have to learn the harsh consequences of B.O. on his or her own.
There will obviously be deeper flaws to accept, but you get my point (which is, please wear deodorant daily). To sum it up, change doesn't happen due to external forces.
7. There Is Nothing You Can Do That Will Make Me Love You Less
No matter what you say and no matter what you do, your big sisters will always be there to make sure you're okay. Believe me when I say that since the day you were born, you have always been my number one priority.
Remember that time you threw up on me twice in one night? Of course you don't; you couldn't even walk. Guess what? I thought it was cute. Who thinks vomit is cute???
You've turned me into this demented human who sees no wrong with anything you do because in my mind, you're the greatest little booger that's ever set foot on the earth.
So, trust me when I say you could do anything, say anything, be anything, want anything and, my dear baby sister, I promise you I'll still think the sun shines out of your ass.