Only one word can describe me as a child: rotten. I was the brat of the family for the longest time. I grew up mainly around my paternal family. Many of us went to the same church or schools and lived close to each other. My rottenness wasn’t to everyone. Oh I could be so sweet and innocent to my grandma, aunts and uncles. It was my cousins who had to deal with all my misdeeds.
Not too long ago I had an in-depth conversation with Ma Dukes about my rotten years. She knew I was pretty terrible as her child, but didn’t know of just how bad my cousins got it from me too. I was the family tattle tale if any of my cousins said or did something I didn’t like. One year at Christmas the big cousins wouldn’t let me play The Game of Life. I whined to our grandma who promptly fussed at them for keeping me out of the game.
There were also two older cousins I always had to bother. I called one stupid all the time and hit another (for no reason other than pure evilness). Only because I was little girl saved me from a few well-deserved beat downs. But I wasn’t mean to all my cousins. A few others just probably thought I was annoying for always following them underfoot.
Ma Dukes said it’s a wonder any of my cousins still talk to me today because of my behavior. It was hard being one of the youngest cousins in a big family. No one takes you seriously (until you kick them). I was just an “innocent” bystander in the cousin hierarchy. Little cousins are supposed to be bad.
Now I’m a big cousin, but most of my little cousins aren’t interested in me. I was away in college while most were born, and they all seem to adore my younger brother. However, they did take revenge for their parents at my graduation party by all jumping on my back. Guess I deserved it. But no one is beating up on me or calling me names. Unlike my older cousins I will fight a rotten little child.