Growing up as an only child, I envied the girls with older sisters, because they were clued in way before me, about makeup and the latest fashions. But, the girls with older brothers were the ones who really had it going on because of their ease around boys and confidence they learned from living 24-7 in the midst of a household full of guys.
Blue Bloods' Erin Reagan, Columbia Law School grad, former Manhattan Assistant District Attorney and current Bureau Chief, is one of those girls, and grew up to be a very impressive woman. Surrounded by that air of alpha male, thanks to her dad, top cop Frank, grandfather, former police commissioner, Henry, and brothers, Danny the ace detective, Jamie, the Harvard law school grad turned patrolman, and Joe, who died in the line of duty, it had to have an influence.
Bows, ruffles and lots of pink? Who could put up with that torture. Her style is sleek, understated and out of the less-is-more fashion playbook. She’s got that "no makeup makeup" look, and her no-fuss hairstyle had to come from trying to keep up with her brothers, who no doubt rolled out of bed and were ready to go in five minutes.
Whether she’s being challenged by her hot head brother Danny at work or around the Sunday dinner table, antagonized by a hardened criminal, or opposed by a difficult colleague, Erin does not back down. When provoked by a rival female ADA with whom she was forced to share an assignment, Erin issued a straightforward: "We're usually able to co-exist successfully because you stay on your side of the office, and I stay on mine. Since we have to work together, let's remember we're on the same team and be professional." Let's face it: She had to learn to speak up or be shouted down by her brothers.
How easy it could have been to glide through life as Frank Reagan’s daughter; a few phone calls to open any door, using her last name to curry favor. Nope, not her style. She went into a different line of work, although in the same vein of public service. When offered opportunities at work, Erin’s always clear to make sure they’re earned, and not because someone wants to use her sway with the commissioner. This is a battle her siblings fight as well, so she’s their equal on this one.
There’s no Cinderella Complex in her DNA. Her brothers were taught to make their way in life, and she followed suit; no one was going to save her, so she’d have to learn to save herself. When her "prince" did come along, he cheated on her. Erin chose to raise their daughter Nicky as a single parent. She may be doing it all on her own, but her family’s got her back. It takes a Reagan village.
We've all heard that expression about there being a special place in hell for women who don't support other women, but for Erin that place is for women who betray other women. Growing up hearing about "the job" and how no one is above the law, Erin learned to keep emotions out of her business. When two female mentors, one professional, the other personal, were proven to have engaged in wrongdoing, arrests had to be made, and Erin was there, albeit disappointed, to see them through.
Watching her independent and accomplished mother, Nicky is following in Erin's footsteps, attending Columbia and keeping on the straight and narrow. She sure to blossom into someone equally as poised, attractive and intelligent, and of course, how to be "one of the boys."
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