How many of you are a middle child? Much has been written and discussed about middle children. Some good, some not so good but all with a grain of truth non the less.
Middle Child Syndrome is the feeling of exclusion. The older child/children in a family get privileges and responsibilities. The younger receive more indulgences than the older siblings. Enter the Middle Child and all is but forgotten.
I am a middle child. “Oh, I did not know you even existed”, said some people when I would tell them who my parents were. “I was sure your parents had one and two and four and five”, naming my siblings. “Never heard your name come up anywhere”, said others.
I would reply that is was probably because I am invisible. Oh yes. Middle children are invisible.
I always thought I was adopted as Mum had newspaper notices announcing the birth of all my siblings. Mine was missing
I know I was not a middle child when I was born, but the rot had already started to sink in. I once asked Mum why I had not been announced, so to speak. Her answer was that she was overwhelmed to have another child, one who she did not really want. She always told me she should never have had me.
I guess back in those days there was no birth control so kids were born even if not really planned. She must have recovered from the shock too, as the next two siblings had birth notices.
I was a loner as a youngster. I always did my own thing, made my own fun and just kept out of Mum’s way.
At my father’s funeral, I had people coming up enquiring as to who I was. “Noooo”, was the general reaction when I told them. “I did not know old Tom had another daughter.” See, invisible.
This invisibility was not such a bad thing really. I took advantage of it and did what I wanted to do. No one noticed, they never do with a middle child.
I was very good at sport, I taught myself to do many things as no one else would teach me. I was either too young or too old
One year at school sports, the high jumper from my grade took ill. I begged my father to let me take her place. “Can you even jump?” he asked.
I replied that I could, “a little bit”. That year I broke the age record for girl’s high jump. To this day, 60 years later, that record has never been broken. If Dad was impressed, he did not say so, but I knew in my heart I had done well.
It mattered not that no one noticed my talents, or even my lack of talents. I knew myself that I could do anything I put my mind to. Being as I was, I breezed through life. I made many mistakes and bad judgements along the way, but my tenacity always got me through.
Growing up as such was quite a journey, let me tell you. I look back and reflect and think I could easily have crumbled, like many do, but no, I came through it okay. Not completely unscathed, but okay.
I am happy with my life. It has been a challenge, I have had a lot of ups and more downs, but I am still here, alive and well, just not kicking much nowadays due to a dicky hip joint.
All in all, I have achieved all and even more of what I wanted in life. That is something to be happy about.