Younger, But Not Little

Jose Vilson

Ralf

I love my brother.The herb’s birthday was on St. Patrick’s Day, and yet, another year passes and I couldn’t celebrate with him personally. He’s making big moves at my alma mater, doing everything I didn’t, and hopefully excelling academically. I wish him the very best in his growth as a young man, and as a brother. We didn’t always get along, but he more than anyone else made me want to redeem myself for my past transgressions as an aloof if not dispassionate family member on both my mother and father’s sides. He made me want to be a father someday, too, because of the struggles we went through getting adjusted to each other.

And I already knew he was too big for his britches when I called him up on Monday, and his voicemail was full. Must be all those women (and frat brothers) across the state leaving him crazy messages. I hate to say it, but with 300+ pictures and 600+ friends on Facebook, I admitted to him on Tuesday that he’s getting dangerously close to being more popular than I am, (which is fine because he’s more built for that life). He might have gone to every school I did, but he’s doing everything his way, and despite my nervousness for his future, I’ve come to accept that.

At times, he still needs guidance, but that’s what big brothers are for. Other times, though, my job is to learn from him, too, and not try to outshine him or outdo him wherever I go. Now when I go back to my alma mater, I’m referred to as his brother and not the other way around. It makes me feel old, but it makes me insanely proud. He’s his own star; I can’t always be the brighter of the two. But we’ll forever be part of the same constellation. I have a hard time showing it, but I’m honored that he represents me.

Younger, but not my little brother, Ralf. Happy belated birthday, and keep shining …

jose, the big brother …

Me and My Brother

p.s. – Joel posted a dope awesome Carnival of Education, so a big shout-out goes to him.

edit: by dope, I mean cool. My slang is very NYC-oriented. Sorry for the confusion. Moving right along.