My cousins made my childhood memorable


Thinking back to my childhood, some of my best memories were spent with my cousins. I can vividly remember how the drive to my grandparent’s house felt like we were traveling through a thick tuft of saltwater taffy and how I anxiously awaited the exceptional time I would get to spend with my cousins. Our time together ranged from making cookies at my Aunt Katrina’s to having pool parties at my Aunt Kathy’s. No matter what we ended up doing, my time with them was always cherished and highly anticipated.

Being the oldest out of three girls, I never had an older sibling to turn to. I didn’t have someone who I could ask for help or someone whom I could admire. And while I didn’t mind being the oldest, there was always a small part of me that thought of my cousins as the older sisters I never had. Their beautiful, witty, and adventurous personalities were the one thing that I have strived for– even today.

There is a specific memory I look back to from sometime around 10-years-old. It was Christmas Eve and I was wearing a bright pink and purple poncho. We were having an extended family celebration and my older cousins were just getting ready to leave. I latched myself onto them and would not let them walk even two steps. All three of them looked down at me, pulled me in tight, and said I could call them whenever I wanted. They said their goodbyes and they were off. It was that simple act of kindness and love, that to this day, I can still remember.

Now, I am sixteen years old and my older cousins are grown up. One of them, Paige, has her own two kids. The other, Devan, lives an adventurous life I that I long for. And the last, Sydnie, is expecting her first child. When I think back to how wonderful they made my childhood, it’s uncanny for me to think how fast the time has gone. And what’s even weirder, is that I am now considered the “older cousin.” It’s my turn to help influence my younger cousins and make their childhood memorable.

After traveling to my grandparent’s for Thanksgiving, I made myself a promise. I promised that I would be the Paige, Devan, and Sydnie for my younger cousins. Through hardship and happiness, it is now my goal to help guide them the way that I was guided so many years ago.

So to my younger cousins Gracen, Nolan, Braxton, Ainsley, and Sydnie’s unborn baby boy, I promise that I will do my best to create a memorable childhood for you all. I promise that I will always be there to give you a hug or a laugh when you need it. I will always be willing to play hide and seek and any board game you bring out. I will always be willing to sneak you extra dessert off the table and bring you extra little goodies. And even if I am busy, I promise to always be there for you when you need me.

To Paige, Devan, and Sydnie, I want to thank you for making my childhood one to remember. Thank you for making me feel important and valued. I’m sure that I was annoying at times, so thank you for being patient with me. Thank you for always saying yes to my request of playing Hide and Seek. And thank you for helping me become who I am. I am constantly in awe of your strength, grace and kindness. You live your lives to the fullest potential and always think of others before yourself. I will forever be grateful for the impact you all had on my life. It is my hope that I can be as great as you were to me– to your children and my younger cousins.

And even though it seems like time is a race that never ends, I am extremely grateful for the past. There is a new generation of cousins that is just beginning, and I am ready to make my mark and help them become the best that they can be.