Christine D. This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

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     I never realized that for years I have had a hero right by my side. All summer, my thoughts went like this: As of the last week in August, my hero will be gone. She will move to Virginia where she will grow up, educate herself, maybe meet the man she will eventually marry. She’s going to college, and she’s going without me. Her leaving is perhaps the scariest thing I have yet to face. My hero is my best friend, my greatest confidant, my mentor. My hero is my sister.

I fear the day she will pack up her room with all its picture frames and messy clothes and CD’s and books. I’m afraid that some day I’ll walk into her room and see it empty, too clean, too unlike what it normally is. For 16 years I have looked up to her in every way a sister can. I’ve envied her poise, her friends, even her clothes. The day the doctor told me I was a half inch taller than her I rejoiced because I thought that at last I had triumphed - by becoming taller, I had become greater. Yet I discovered that even with greater height I could never surpass her inner self. I could never become her.

She is everything I have ever wanted to be. She is confident with adults, caring with kids. She can engage anyone in a political discussion and yet still bring a smile to anyone’s face. She has accomplished more in 18 years than most accomplish in their entire lives. She sets goals for herself and has the motivation and the confidence to accomplish them. She’s witty and intelligent, winning many academic awards every year. She’s kind and fun, and friends with all the people that you wish knew you existed. Yet despite all that she is, she always has time for me.

She spent hours teaching me how to play field hockey so that I could become captain of my freshman team. She spent countless nights helping me with projects so that I could get an A. She sewed an awesome skirt for me so that I could have the pretty outfit that everyone complimented me on. She waved to me in the halls at school, so that the seniors would soon learn my name too. She’s coached me through my first day of high school, my first job interview, my first thesis paper. She’s been one of the greatest forces in my life and I don’t know where I would be without her.

Come September I will enter a school that I have known for two years, but for the first time in my life she won’t be with me. She’s helped me become everything I am today and with her leaving, there will be no one to help coach me through her absence.

What is a hero? My sister. A hero is everything you wished you were, and yet they help you become everything you can be. A hero is able to look past their own and others’ imperfections to better the world. A hero is someone who makes you feel secure, who saves you in all the ways a person can be saved and asks for nothing in return. A hero is my sister, a hero in my everyday life. She doesn’t wear a cape and can’t leap buildings. She’s an ordinary person and yet she’s my hero all the same.

This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.






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