There is many a day when I wish I could have done better in the “Big Sister” department of my life. I have only one sibling, and that is my sister who is 4 years younger than me. I look back on times that we spent together and how we used to (still do) torment each other, how we used to (still do) fight all the time, and how we used to (still do) make fun of each other – and I just see where I came up short.
I look around at some of my friends that are my age, who have younger sisters that are my sisters age, and they just seem to have that “we are such best friends” vibe going on… And I’m over here like “How do you do that? How do you not pick on each other and get irritated with each other?” I wish I could be my sister’s best friend. Maybe later on in life we’ll get to that stage, but for the last 21 years that she’s been around, most of the years we weren’t even what you would call “friends.”
Sadly, I feel like I wasted a lot of years wishing my sister wasn’t around. Wishing she wasn’t so different from me, and wondering what her problem was and how it was her fault that we never got along. Which was totally wrong. It was my fault. The truth is, my sister and I are very different – like night and day different. I’m night because I’m the bad sister and she’s day because she is the good sister. I have had some major screw ups in my life and made TERRIBLE life choices. My sister seemingly has done no wrong in that area and is on the straight and narrow path. I have had a pretty healthy life, but not a healthy body. My sister is like the epitome of health, she works out, and runs, and lifts, and eats vegetables, and doesn’t drink soda – but she has had some SERIOUS health and heart issues in her life and several surgeries and procedures done. I am terrible at sports, she’s good at everything. I am a very dependent person and my sister is fiercely independent. I am outgoing, loud, obnoxious and usually rude, my sister is quiet, calm, polite and bottles all of her feelings up. My sister consistently walks the line of cute/adorable and beautiful looking and I usually look like troll. I should have been more open and understanding of our differences. How boring would it have been if my little sister was just like me? Then my parents would have 2 terrible daughters instead of just one.
I do feel lucky to have the sister that I do, she is very understanding of my shortcomings (or maybe she’s just used to the fact that I suck as a sister). She’s never asked too much of me, because she’s never really asked anything of me. And I think that’s because she doesn’t expect anything from me, which is a failure on my part to be loving, kind, and supportive. It’s sad to say, but we get along the best – when we aren’t near each other, or at least, not living with each other. I’ve never expected anything of her, because I never wanted to put any pressure on her to be there for me. I never thought it was my little sister’s place to be my emotional crutch and my pat on the back. We also weren’t raised that way – we both seem to have the belief that “my problems are my problems and no one else’s and no one is going to help me deal with them except myself.” Maybe due to that “common belief” we share, we just figured the other person didn’t care. I hope my sister knows that I care.
Today, as I was whining about what an awful human being I am and the fact that I think I’m a terrible sister – I had a friend remind me of some memories:
She reminded me of this one time in high school, at an away basketball game, how I stood up for my sister. It was her first year on the basketball team, and my last year. She had missed a pass or a shot or something and it had upset another member of the team. During half time that other player made a snide remark about my sister. And then I basically screamed at her “DON’T YOU EVER TALK ABOUT MY SISTER THAT WAY.”
Another time was at summer camp, I was a counselor and my sister was a camper still I think. And there were these twin boys who kept picking on her and they called her chubby. I found out about it (and probably legally crossed a line) as I grabbed each boy by the arm and dragged them through the courtyard and threatened to take all of the free time away and making sure they would be severely punished (definitely didn’t have that authority) if they didn’t immediately apologize to her.
I was then reminded of the time that I was supposed to be watching my sister, and I couldn’t find her (she was still with my parents at my grandparents house, they hadn’t left yet) and I called my friend to come over to help me find her and I was screaming and crying and sobbing and I called 4 different relatives to help me because I was so scared that she was going to get hurt on her own.
And then of course, there is the fond memory of me hearing one of my sister’s “friends” say something not so nice about her and I might have called them a “not very nice word” to their face. (Really I’m a terrible person and example.)
So it’s good to know that in any case, I can at least be verbally abusive in my sister’s defense.
I think it’s okay that I write all this here, because my sister tends to not actually read my blog, and I’m okay with that. I just wanted to say that I do have regrets and I do care. I regret not being able to come to her Sweet 16 – I was sad all day that I missed it. I’m sorry I wasn’t there for any of her heart procedures, but I will state that I was a crying and praying mess those days. And I want to tell her that I’m her biggest cheerleader, but I do it quietly because I know that I embarrass her a lot. And I’M SORRY that I repeat stories, jokes, and facts a lot, I’m old okay, and I’m turning into our mother, I just FORGET!
I hope she knows, that even if I said “I hate you” – I never ever meant it, ever. I hope she knows that I care about what she has done, what she is doing, and what she does in the future. I hope she knows that I pray for her every night and think about her every morning. I hope she knows that if there are things I didn’t tell her, it’s not because I wanted to keep secrets from her, I just didn’t want to burden her. I hope she knows that I will always be on her side no matter what. I hope she knows that I’m sorry for not being a better example. I hope she knows that the 911 call was the scariest moment of my entire life and that I still have nightmares about it. I hope she knows that when I say “I miss you” I mean it and when I say “What are you doing” it means I wish she was with me. I hope she knows that I regret that I couldn’t give her better advice. I hope she knows that she is the most important person in my life, and I hold her above all others on this earth. I hope she knows how much I love her.