A few weeks ago while visiting my hometown, my dad burned the barbecue he had been carefully tending to. He had stepped inside when his phone rang and by the time he made it back to the pit, our dinner was a charred mess.
As my mom grabbed her purse to go get more meat for a second try, I stood up and told my sister that she needed to go with my mom and then told my husband to drive them to the store. Finally, I told my brother he needed to help my dad and then I volunteered to take care of the potato salad.
And here’s what my brother said:
“How come you give all the orders?”
I hadn’t realized I had snapped back into big sister mode. If you’re not an older sibling, you might know it as the bossy mode.
All my life, I’ve told my siblings what to do. Call it bossy. Call it tyrannical, but I’m very good at it. As I saw it, my brother and sister needed strict direction and plus, their crying was annoying.
Over the years, however, I’ve (sort of) grown out of my totalitarian ways, and I’m sure my husband would say that I’m never bossy.
Or else I’d tell him to say it.
In all seriousness though, I have hoped I’ve become a better big sister. If they didn’t learn from my commands, then I’m sure I gave them a great example of what not to do when I was punished for my bossy behavior.
Anyway, with my brother towering over me now as a high school student and my sister off at college, it’s harder and harder for me to tell them what to do. My tyrannical skills are fading, and I may be becoming just a normal, boring older sister.