Being a first kid must be incredibly difficult. Good thing both of the past two First Families have had multiple children so they have someone else of a similar age to rely on during rough times that wouldn’t be understood by anyone else. Moving to The White House is never the First Children’s decision, and it certainly can’t be easy moving away from friends and transitioning to a life of 24/7 scrutiny and government security. Leaving the White House can’t be easy either though, as whether you spend four or eight years in DC there are comforts that are simply irreplaceable once that gate closes behind your car one last time.
To help Sasha and Malia Obama process their transition out of Presidential life, Barbara Bush and Jenna Hager (neé Bush) AKA The Bush Twins, sent the Obama sisters a lovely and heartfelt letter about this turning point in their lives via TIME Magazine. In the missive, they reminisce about when the two sets of sisters first overlapped, when the young Obama girls were first entering a life in the spotlight. They remember just how nice it was to show their younger counterparts around their new home. Jenna and Barbara recall,
We saw both the light and wariness in your eyes as you gazed at your new home. We left our jobs in Baltimore and New York early and traveled to Washington to show you around. To show you the Lincoln Bedroom, and the bedrooms that were once ours, to introduce you to all the people—the florists, the grounds-keepers and the butlers—who dedicate themselves to making this historic house a home.
The four of us wandered the majestic halls of the house you had no choice but to move in to. When you slid down the banister of the solarium, just as we had done as 8-year-olds and again as 20-year-olds chasing our youth, your joy and laughter were contagious.
As lovely an idea as it is to imagine these events from eight years ago occurring at all, now the Bushes are continuing their mentoring of Sasha and Malia nearly a decade later. They say,
Now you are about to join another rarified club, one of former First Children—a position you didn’t seek and one with no guidelines. But you have so much to look forward to. You will be writing the story of your lives, beyond the shadow of your famous parents, yet you will always carry with you the experiences of the past eight years.
Enjoy college. As most of the world knows, we did. And you won’t have the weight of the world on your young shoulders anymore. Explore your passions. Learn who you are. Make mistakes—you are allowed to. Continue to surround yourself with loyal friends who know you, adore you and will fiercely protect you. Those who judge you don’t love you, and their voices shouldn’t hold weight. Rather, it’s your own hearts that matter.
While the public will continue to scrutinize both Obama girls as they go forth in life, it must be heartening to know that they have another strong duo supporting them every step of the way. It’s a nice touch that Jenna and Barbara referenced their own front-page gracing college years. Maybe Sasha and Malia can pay it forward when Baron Trump leaves The White House in four years.