Yesterday was my sister's birthday. I actually mailed her card on time, at least if the Post Office is still working on Saturdays. I just wanted to let her know I'm glad she was born.

She's older than me by seven years. That means for a very long time we had pretty much nothing in common. I was just the kid she had to keep an eye on when she was in middle school, and I talked too much (shocking, I know). I was in elementary school when she got married, and in junior high when she had her first child. [That was cool, though, because I got to be an aunt before all my friends.] By the time I graduated high school, she had three kids, a husband, a house...and I went off to college.

At some point in college, that adage about age differences mattering less as you get older really became true. Her marriage ended and she moved back to our hometown, while I was the one away. Within a few years, I was married and a mom to two boys. She married a wonderful man exactly one month after me. We took a couple of vacation weekends together and had a blast. Spending weekends together doing nothing is one of my favorite things, and it doesn't happen often enough.

We are about as different as it's possible to be. I'm the planner/organizer, she's the seat-of-her-pants girl. I was the uptight, do it perfectly parent; she was the relaxed, "it'll all work out fine" parent. I don't think I've ever told her how much I wanted to be more like her.

Talking to a sister is unlike talking to anyone else. She may not know every event of your life, but she knows your heritage and history. She knows what you run from and what you run to. She knows the look in your eye and the tone in your voice that anyone else would miss. I can fake my way through most things with most people, but not her.

No one can push your buttons like a sister, either. Whether you're 5, 15, or 50, she knows right where those pressure points are. Of course, you know hers, too. I'd like to think that as you get older, you are wiser about when and why you push them, but still...

If you have a sister, I hope you have a good relationship with her. If you don't have one by blood, I hope you have a really good sister-friend. If you've lost a sister, my heart goes out to you. That is not a loss I know, and one I cannot imagine.

I'm lucky enough to get to call my sister every week and talk about nothing, or something, or some of both. It's one of the highlights of my week.

Happy birthday week, sis.


  1. There is NOTHING like a sister, and no way to adequately explain it to a man. There are times when simply no one else will do. Glad to have you as a sister-friend! Love you!


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