I was eight years old when my little sister was born. I was blown away when my parents told me I was going to have a baby brother or sister, and when she finally popped out I was beyond ecstatic. I was a big sister! I could teach her awesome things and help her with her homework and felt immensely grown-up. Now, I did all these things, but I also discovered that kid sisters weren’t awesome all the time. I would lend her my old Barbie dolls and she would cut off their hair. I’d have friends over and they would be more interested in seeing her than me, and as I grew chubbier, got terrible haircuts, had to wear braces and got hit with that awful tween awkwardness, she got proportionally cuter and blonder. No matter what I did, she would learn a new word or gargle or sing a song or bat her lashes and steal my thunder. I had been an only child for eight years, and this new situation was getting unbearable. I had to take matters into my own hands.
One of my sisterly duties included reading her bedtime stories. They were mostly classic fairy tales or Disney books, but one evening I decided to make up my own stories. Stories with a real educational value. And thus Princess Fartypoot was born. Princess Fartypoot was, as her name suggests, a princess, living in a castle with a king and queen for parents. She also had an Older Sister Princess. Princess Fartypoot would do things like destroy Older Sister Princess’s Barbie Dolls or scratch poor Older Sister Princess’ CDs, and it always ended in tragedy – most of the time Princess Fartypoot would be attacked by the vicious Potty Monster – but the important thing was that Princess Fartypoot always learned her lesson and never ever wronged Older sister Princess again.
My sister loved these stories. She kept demanding more of them, and I got to sneakily vent about all the annoying things my poor clueless sister would do to me. Would Princess Fartypoot bang on the door while Older Sister Princess was in the bathroom? She ended up being bitten by the Potty Monster. Would she ask to have some of Older Sister Princess’s food that Older Sister Princess had cooked just for herself after a long hard day at Princess School? Potty Monster. Would she ask to watch Children’s TV shows while Older Sister Princess was watching her favorite Sit Com? POTTY MONSTER!
The most brilliant part of my sneaky scheme was that my sister never realized what I was doing. “Psssht, please“, I hear you say. “There’s no way she didn’t connect the dots eventually“. Yes way. Yes totally way. I know this for a fact. How? Because I went home for a holiday one time perhaps about four or five years ago – my sister and I were reminiscing about old times and Princess Fartypoot was brought up. I said something along the lines of “Haha, I loved telling you those stories, you never realized that Princess Fartypoot was actually you”.
I could see her smile disappear and the proverbial light bulb light up above her head. I’m pretty sure that this moment will go down as one of the top five most amazing moments of my life. The exact moment where my teenage sister realized that I had been brain washing her as a child.