17

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His age, in case you wonder.

I’ve always wanted a brother. All the cool kids seemed to have one. Even the less-than-cool ones. So when my parents divorced, it seemed highly unlikely that I would ever have my very own brother.

But then things turned around and there I was, 11 and holding a little package in my arms. They told me he was my brother. Well, technically speaking my half-brother, or stepbrother. I hated both expressions and if there is one thing you can make me go ape about, then this is it. So whenever someone goes ‘Ah, I thought he was your real brother…’ I’m like, ‘I thought you were nice, but now I must punch you in the nose’. So Misi (Mee-shee), this tiny little man with tiny little arms and legs activated my paternal instincts way too early, resulting in an almost repulsive need to cuddle babies within an arm’s reach ever since.

Misi has always been nice and chill. The Hungarian phrase ‘jószívű’ (kind-hearted) is probably the motto of his personality, it has been engraved deeply in his heart and mind. So even though I had my asshole elder brother-y moves, he would always just smile and pat my shoulder and let me know without words that, well, I had been an asshole elder brother.

Speaking of patting my shoulder, even now that he has turned 17, kept this habit. Having lived in England for the past six years, his Hungarian has stuck in the mud a little, so when he tries to call my name (‘Péter’) he goes with an awkward mixture of the Hungarian and the English form.

Either way, that’s him above, scroll back and see how a young, almost-man looks like, squatting on the windy peak of Brean Down. It’s futile to imagine the little package I held seventeen years ago, but the lines above might say a word or two about how grateful I am for his existence.

Not to mention ‘the rest’: after him, two brothers and one sister came to life. My premature complaints were listened, I guess.

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2 thoughts on “17

  1. I’m with you. I have seven children. Two of them share my DNA. I call them all my children. In certain circumstances I do have to be more specific and call the other five stepchildren, but the word always catches in my throat a little.

    Liked by 1 person

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