Britt has a lot of cousins. There are a cool dozen of them and she loved each one of them* in the way that perhaps only an only child can. But, though she had so many cousins, she had only one Cousin.
Cousin was what she called my nephew Christopher. Christopher is nine months older than Britt and for years they were inseparable. They went to school together, played together, and got in trouble together. And when she died, his heart broke right along with ours. The years since have been hard for him.
Today, I spent a few hours editing Cousin's college application essay and talking to him about his plans for the future. Britt would love the idea of him off at college...of him making plans. I love it, too.
*Britt never met her littlest cousin, Jack, but she would have loved him to pieces.