This is my little sister. (I think it is the first photo I have published on the blog - but I have determined that it is enough from the back that no one can identify her...)
She is one of the most amazing people I have ever met. She is more generous than anyone I know. She is more polite than either of my own children. She is kind. She is responsible. She is damn smart. (although her WKCE scores may not reflect that....you will have to trust me.)
When I offer to buy her "anything in the world - anything she wants" would you like to know what she asks for? A book. She doesn't want designer jeans. She doesn't want an electronic gadget. She doesn't want the latest Harry Potter lego set. (note - those are all things that MY kids might ask for.) She just wants a book. (Really, she is that incredible.)
And she is incredibly lucky. She's lucky because she's a girl. If she were a boy, she would *still* be on the waiting list at Big Brothers/Big Sisters. The last three years of amazing experiences that we have had would be nothing but dreams.
Did you know that boys in Dane County wait over 2 years for a mentor? TWO YEARS. I think that her little brother has been on the waiting list for 3 years.
I love that the new BB/BS campaign is entitled MAN UP.
I try to explain to people that yes, being a Big takes up a lot of time. And yes, being a Big can sometimes take a little bit of money. (We aren't supposed to buy our "littles" anything, but you show me the person who can let a child live in Wisconsin without a winter coat....) And yes, being a Big can be tough. You will face things you never thought you'd be dealing with.
But it is simply impossible to explain to people how being a Big makes your heart soar. Being a Big changes everything. Being a Big gives you hope, purpose, and faith in humanity.
I've never once in my life wished I were a man. But reading the statistics about the dire lack of Big Brothers, I just wish that I could be a Big Brother.
The difference a Big Brother would make in the world - wow. I can't even come close to that.
Man Up. You could change the world. Or at least one incredible young boy's world.