I used to hate having my brother follow me around on the playground. He was only a year younger than I was, but even then, the two of us were so different. If I was on the slide, he wanted to be on the slide. If I was climbing the bars, he would climb them higher. If I started on a swing, he would climb into the swing next to me, intent on showing everyone how much higher and faster he could go.
He would start by matching my pace, swinging his legs as we rushed forward then turning at me and blowing a raspberry as we swung back, side by side.
“Get out of my shadow!” I’d say.
“Get out of my sma-mow!” he would mockingly reply.
Then, he’d swing higher and higher and leap off. Running off to play with the other kids. They would all laugh together at whatever my brother would say. I’d continue alone.
Sometimes I wish I had his easy way with everybody.
Mostly though I wish that he was still here.