The child becomes the mother. The sister becomes the aunt. And history repeats.

Today, my baby sister will become a mother.

How is this possible? I remember the day I met Jenny, the day I became a big sister. My grandmother brought me a doll to give to Jenny, and it became my first gift to her. I felt very big sister about the whole thing, and given that Grandmama also brought me a doll, I didn’t even mind so much giving it up.

In a drunken stupor last weekend I told my brother as we were out at the bar that somehow, some way, he and Jenny had become two of my best friends. How in the world did that happen? From pulling hair and time outs and teenage angst to positive relationships in which we encourage each other and help each other accomplish our dreams and do favors for each other … what a world of difference. And it wasn’t just the beer talking – although I would have pulled his hair after saying that just to prove a point – if he had any hair.

If I had childhood to do all over again I would be less bossy, less stubborn and more grateful of my siblings.

At age 2, Mom asked me how I would like to have a little brother or sister to play with. “No thanks,” I said politely, but thank God it wasn’t up to me, because I can’t imagine my life without them.

I see a lot of myself in my niece, Mia (Kevin and Jenn, I apologize in advance).

My parents had 3 children: Me, then Jenny, then Kevin. My brother has 2 girls: Mia, then Sadie. Today Jenny will have a boy: Cai.

I’m seeing a pattern here.

When Mia asks me “Where does pee pee come out of in a dog?” I laugh inside as I remember Kevin asking not-too-dissimilar questions not too long ago. I wonder if Cai will try to teach me T-Ball like Jenny did (I bet I’m not any better at it now than I was then.) I wonder if Mia will play the same tricks on Sadie and Cai as I did on Jenny and Kevin. If they’ll have just as much fun laughing with each other as we did with our cousins.

It’s not the same as the doll I gave Jenny but I did get Cai a ton of monkeys for his nursery. He probably won’t ask me to help him pick out outfits like Mia does, but it will be fun to see what he does have in store for me.

I feel very big sister about the whole thing.