The Secret Powers of Middle Children (Middle Child Syndrome?)


The Middle Child

I’m never first

 not even last

just somewhere

in the middle

imagine that


But that’s alright

there’s only one me

and I’ll rise

 to shine



Wendy ❀ 2015




For God does not show favoritism.

Romans 2:11


I’ve never given the birth order subject much thought

until recently.

I read a post that talked about middle children

(I’ll put the link at the end of this post).

And then I read another one about them

(I’ll also include that link).

It made me think about my middle child.

And the more I thought about him

the more I realized we’ve got something in common

besides our dimples.


I’m a middle child too.




But I’m not just a run-of-the-mill-middler.

My older sister was born with Down’s Syndrome.

She was low-functioning.

That meant at an early age

I was thrust into a semi-firstborn role

of helping watch out for her.


“Mom. She’s eating flowers again.”

I got to be the fink.

Poor Debbie never got a chance to tattle on me.

She wasn’t verbal (not with words).

But I loved her.

And I believe she loved me too.

And when she was near death

I drove several hundred miles in the dead of winter

to visit her in the hospital.

She was in isolation with the H1N1 virus,

and I was able to be alone with her

and sing one of our old songs from childhood.

She had always loved to dance.


And I know she’s dancing

 in heaven







I didn’t get the privileges of a firstborn (undivided attention).

I got so much more.

I was blessed with an abiding love for those with special needs.

A love for the underdog.



The greatest gift you can get.




When you know you’re not the center of anyone’s universe,

I think you’re more likely to believe

 in the Creator of the universe.


Are you a middle child too?


Whatever position you fell into in your first family,

it’s the perfect place for you

and for all God wants to do in and through you.

He doesn’t play favorites.


Give your middle child an extra hug today.


Middle of the road blessings ~ Wendy ❀


Here’s the link I promised.

Click on the name Eli (His blog is Coach Daddy).

He writes from his daddy heart,

and I should warn you (from experience) that he might make you cry.

But it’s the good kind.


P.S. – The Secret Powers of Middle Children looks like an intriguing read.

Click the title for a link to an article about it.

You’ll feel honored to be a middle child after you’ve read it.

I am.

And for the rest of you…well

you already had your chance to shine. 😉

So keep on shining.

~ ❀ ~


~ ❀ ~


~ ❀ ~


61 thoughts on “The Secret Powers of Middle Children (Middle Child Syndrome?)

  1. I love this: When you know you’re not the center of anyone’s universe, I think you’re more likely to believe
    in the Creator of the universe. I’m sort of a middle child – but also the oldest child. Because I have a sister 11 years older, a brother 7 years older, a brother 16 months younger and a sister 10 years younger. Therefore I’m with you. Who really cares about birth order? God created me to be exactly how he wanted me – personality, looks, IQ – and that was way before even my ancestors were conceived. LOL

    1. Jane, I agree that our focus needs to remain on Who formed us and not on the circumstances surrounding our birth and childhood. Whatever has happened can be used for good.

      And God is definitely good. ❀

  2. Beautiful post Wendy. And what a privilege for you to be with your lovely sister when she was near death and Im sure you were such a comfort to her. I think I had better give my middle child a virtual hug instead of a real one at the moment, or she may feel embarrassed in front of her patients in clinic!! I don’t believe she suffered in any way being a “middler”😊.

    Your photos are absolutely exquisite xx

    1. Diana, I’m not surprised that you’re a first born. My three closest friends are firstborns (one was born 10 yrs after her sister–so that counts as firstborn) and so is my husband. Middle children pair perfectly with firstborns or the youngest. <3

      1. I did not know that! I have learned though, that firstborns are bossy and the only people bossier, because they don’t have to negotiate at all, are single born children!

  3. I was an only child. When I was growing up, I thought that was pretty cool…I got all the Christmas presents. I don’t know that I’ve ever really unlearned the lesson that everything is about me. Now, on my side, I have no family – only me. No brothers or sisters, no nephews or nieces. No “Uncle Clarence.” Of course, “Grandpa” is pretty nice. My wife and I have four children. Their growing up was the usual bickering and carrying on. Now that they’re grown, and I watch them interact as good friends, I see that I missed a great deal. Though the grandkids are a blessing. The oldest recently told his mom that when he had a family, he wanted to live close to them so that his kids, one at a time, could spend every Friday with his folks, like he and his siblings had done with us. So, I guess there’s something to be said no matter whether you were first or second or twelfth. Thank you, Wendy. Love your words and pictures.

    1. Clarence, I’ll bet you’re the best Grandpa ever. One of my closest friends is an only child, and she has been like a sister to me for years. My children consider her an aunt, as she has treated them kindly since their birth. And I especially appreciate that she prays for each one of them. ❀

  4. My hope is that my girls will always feel like they’re my world, but not the center of the universe. Thanks so much for the link on such a beautiful and poignant post. Middle children are pretty incredible.

    1. Eli, your fatherly love shines brightly in your posts. Your daughters are very blessed. When my dad smiled at me, all was well with my world. I’m grateful for having had a good-willed dad too. ❀

      1. It’s not always easy – there are times the smiles aren’t reciprocated – but a dad has to believe his mission is the most important thing he’ll ever do.

    1. Wow. Your post is awesome. And there is so much in it that I can relate to (and that my neurotypical middle child can relate to) . I’d like to elaborate more on that, but I trust you’ll be able to read between the lines. I’m not at liberty to say more–as yet. Nice to meet you. ❀

  5. Very good, touching and interesting post, Wendy.
    My parents had 10 kids, I’m number 6, that’s somewhere in the middle 🙂
    I’m so sorry you lost your sister. I’ve spent most of this month sick and recovering from H1N1. I now know how horrible the flu can be for the elderly and weak; I really thought that I might not recover.

    1. Bill, I’m so very glad you beat H1N1. I, and many others (besides your dear Mary), would have been heart-broken if you hadn’t.
      Whenever I mention “my blogging friend Bill”, my family knows exactly who I’m talking about. Your blog, your testimony, and your friendship mean a lot to me. ❀ Keep shining fellow middler. And when we meet on the other side–be prepared for a big hug (if not before then). 🙂

  6. Ha….beautiful post!! I am a middle child 😉 and I have heard of the ‘middle child syndrome’, but never experienced it. Perhaps because I was the first girl AND perhaps that’s exactly where I needed to be 🙂

  7. For fourteen years I was the younger of two; then, my baby brother came along and completely changed our family. So for a while, I was a middle. My sister soon left for college, and at home, I became the oldest. I guess you could say I’ve had the opportunity to be everywhere 🙂

  8. An apple in the bowl … Wendy, I’m a middle child! This is so sweet. For about eight years, it was just my sister and me, and then my younger brother came along. So I think I got out of that “middle syndrome” thing a bit. And now I have just two girls. But three cats. Ha! Your baby picture is just precious! xoxoxo

    1. ❀ Shelli, one of the “secret powers of middle children” is their ability to negotiate. They’re good peacemakers. The recent reading I’ve done on this has shown me that each person in the family has been blessed with unique strengths and abilities. It’s a win-win for all. <3

  9. Wendy, I’m sorry for your loss. Your sister was so lucky to have you, my friend!

    I don’t know what to think about the middle child syndrome. Being one myself, I can certainly relate to some traits such as a strong sense of justice and some others, but not all of them are identifiable. For instance, I’m not supposed to enjoy working in isolation, and I do! Of course that could be the introvert in me. Paul is a middle child, and according to the article you linked, we shouldn’t get along, but nothing could be further from the truth. Sometimes the labels we tend to put on each other are just that, and can be confusing. Just my opinion. 🙂 As for my kids, I only have the two, so no middles!

    Your photography is breathtaking as always. <3

    Jennifer xo

    1. Jennifer, I like working in isolation too. But every once in awhile I crawl out of my woman cave and hunt down a set of ears so I can read my latest scribblings aloud.

      I suspect middlers may be more like snowflakes than channels on a television. And that sits fine by me, since writers want to have a unique voice anyways.

      Now I’m coming over to check out your side of Canada. I’ll just dig out my parka and boots from the storage room. I’ve been suffering with snow envy. We didn’t even get our token snowfall (yet) this winter. <3 I may resort to posting last years snow pics. 😉

  10. Wendy, such a wonderful and enlightening post! I am a middle child too. Yes, we do negotiate very well and we love peace. God has blessed you with so much insight. Thank you for sharing

    1. ❀ Thank you, Susan. I’m simply following my curiosity and gleaning from the insight of others. One of the things I noticed was that we middlers need to speak up for ourselves or others may roll right over us. I’m learning to say no. 😉

  11. Wendy,
    I love that sisters are one of the most endearing exchanges of the heart. Your pictures are stunning! God bless your middle, first and youngest…you must be extremely proud of them! ~Zoey

  12. Lovely post, Wendy. It’s good to take a breath and focus on the middle child. They occupy a special place and in a large family, are sometimes marginalized or even overlooked. My Ken was the 5th of 9 children, well and truly in the middle. Middle children often have a sweet and uncompetitive nature. Often they are the success stories in a family. Wherever they may be found in the family constellation, we love them all.

    1. Dear Mary, I love your imagery in ‘family constellation.’ In the eyes of a loving mother and Creator each child is a star. Thank you for your always thoughtful comments. ❀

  13. Wendy you were and are a caring, loving soul. From day one, you learned compassion from loving your beautiful sister. I am a middle child I feel a great sense of connection for all my siblings. My daughter is the first born, yet she had to take a back seat to our second child who has many challenges with his autism. I see such a gentle loving and compassionate person in her. The love she has for her brother is astounding. This is such a beautiful post. Thank you for sharing your precious memories with us.

    1. Kath, “a great sense of connection” with one’s family is a gift that blesses all of one’s relationships. I think having “imperfect” siblings teaches us how to love more deeply. Yes, my sister was beautiful. Thank you, Kath. ❀

      1. Wendy I know my daughter has a great sense of accepting other kids as they are, due to her deep understanding of her brother’s diffability. She knows its okay to be different, as would you.

  14. Greetings from another middle child. 🙂 I wouldn’t want to be anything else. It’s just right for me. Although this trait is rather frustrating at times “they can see all sides of a question”; which means I get stuck at those crossroads you mention in your next post. ( Yes I am reading your posts in the wrong order!) I am so pleased you could be with your sister at her dying. Blessings.

    1. I’m so honored that you’re reading my posts. Decision making is not my favorite pastime—that’s for sure. Usually I choose the path that makes my heart pound the most and then I pray that God opens and closes the doors according to His will, otherwise I’d just keep standing at the crossroads waiting for a note to fall from the sky. ❀ I’d love to get a note addressed from heaven in my mailbox.

      1. Wouldn’t that be brilliant! A note from heaven in the mailbox. In a way I do get lots of notes from heaven; they come via friends/angels.

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