By ◆ Juppie on Sunday, March 28, 2010 @ 10:33 AM


The title of this post may confuse you. What I'm trying to do here is play on the phrase, "Like father, like son" or "Like mother, like daughter".

On Saturday, I had two piano recitals to attend. My piano teacher has a lot of students, so she has two recitals. Most students only perform in one recital, except for a few exceptions. In the afternoon, I was number 18 in the lineup and played the song Nocturne in F Minor, Op 55 No 1. I left for home after my performance so I could relax a bit and eat dinner before returning for the second recital. When I arrived back at the church (we always have our recitals at a certain church, I suppose you can rent it for performances, seeing as it has a piano), I saw some people coming out of the church and standing in the parking lot.

I saw two girls, and I think they were probably sisters. They were both wearing a jacket sort of thing and dresses. Also, both of them seemed to like swinging their legs around. One girl swung one of her legs back and forth, while the other girl did some movements that looked like kicks. o_o;; I suppose sisters behave alike. I think my mom and aunt are similar in ways too.

Sometimes I wonder what my sibling(s) would be like if I had any. Would my sibling, like me, favor my father's genes, or my mother's? Would my sibling be a mix of my parents? Or would he/she look like neither? What kind of interests and personality would he/she have? Would we get along? Would we fight all the time? Would we barely talk to each other?

As an only child, I think of how things could have different if I hadn't been an only child. People who do have siblings oftentimes think that it must be nice to be an only child. You don't have to share your toys, or if you're a younger child, you won't have to deal with getting hand-me-downs (well, unless they're from other relatives or something). And your parents' attention is focused on you, you, you. You are, however, your parents' only posterity, and their expectations rest on you solely (though I hear sometimes oldest siblings still feel the burden of being expected to do great things, at least in the case of someone I know). I'm just fortunate that my parents are not as driven as some parents. One of my classmates said her father threatened to disown her if she didn't get an A in math.

But sometimes, even if you're an only child, you might still feel like you're being compared to someone. And in that case it's even harder than being compared to a sibling. If you're compared to your siblings, at least you know what you're up against, but if you're being compared to an imaginary, perfect child, or to all other successful people in general, it's a lot harder.

I used to feel like I was being forced to be someone, to be "smart" and earn a lot of money, but after a while I began to realize the pressure mostly didn't come from my parents. Some of the pressure came from seeing other students and their ambitions, but in fact, I believe I have created some of the stress upon myself, too. I often seem to have an angel and demon on my shoulders - the angel says that I must stop getting distracted, and focus very seriously on my work - while the demon says, "Oh, just a few more minutes won't hurt. You have to have some fun." And then I end up in anguish for having cheated myself by not listening to the angel and not achieving my potential. When I am upset over a test score, it's not exactly the grade that really bothers me, but the feeling of having failed, and not done as much as I could have and should have.

Well, back to the topic of being an only child...This may vary from person to person, depending on personality and a person's experiences, but I think only children are probably more likely to get lonely. I personally feel like I might be closer to or more reliant on my parents, as they are the only real family I have (I do have grandparents, uncles, aunts, cousins, but I don't see them much), and so I feel the absence of their presence more deeply. (Sometimes I even thought I wanted to die at the same time as my parents or before them so that I wouldn't need to feel the pain from their deaths.) I wonder if this is just one of life's many hurdles. After all, no one ever said life was easy (or did someone?).

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