Why Bhai? A guest post by Maleeha Siddiqui

I was an only child for three years and one month. Sadly, I don’t recall a whole lot from that period in my life. When I didn’t have to share attention and my stuff with another kid at home. Memories began sticking to me when my brother, H, was born. I distinctly remember how my dad carried me up to the hospital room where my mom was sitting up in bed in a white gown. How I was still in my dad’s arms when my eyes went straight to the pink-faced, chubby baby in the bassinet beside her.

“This is your bhai,” my dad told me all those years ago. Bhai. The Urdu word for “brother.” Neither of my parents told me his actual name, so “bhai” was how I was introduced to my brother and what I would refer to him as for the next two years. Thought at the time, I had no idea what a “brother” was. But some part of my brain knew that this new, pouty-lipped face was here to stay.