She was my first friend.
She pretended I was her baby. Rocking me. Attempting to feed me (chewed up carrots…). And loving on me like a mother hen.
She was my first roommate. The one who knew I was the messy one but always put in half the work (or more) at cleanup time. The one who was much more type A. While I was type Z.
She always put up with my loud personality. Even though she was much more introspective. And appropriate.
She was gentle. The one who never came on too strong. Or who people thought was too much.
She could always be found deep in a book. I could always be found deep in a conversation.
She asked me to make her calls. And sell her Girl Scout Cookies. I borrowed her clothes (without asking). And asked her help with math.
We were continuously dressed in outfits to match the other’s. But at the core and all the way to the surface, there wasn’t really anything else about us that matched. She may not own mascara. And I never leave the house without it. She wanted a file cabinet for Christmas one year. I have to repeat the ABC’s a million times to get anything filed. She always thinks everything through while I am much more impulsive. We are different. But it’s those differences that have forever seemed to make us work.
She let me tagalong. In all things. To all places. We shared summer jobs. We shared a car. And I even shared her friendships.
We sang. We danced. We played on the same teams. We were always there, in the same mix of life.
Even though we were completely different, I secretly wished I could be more of her. And less of me. She was the one who was brilliant. Always dating someone. Always committed to her closest friendships. I was the social butterfly. The one who was sort of just afraid of boys. And flitting and fleeing around to different friendships based on the seasons of life.
When she left for college, I was crushed that she was going ahead, without me in tow. We’d always been doing this life thing together. I was terrified that it would all change. That she would no longer have room for me in her grown-up life.
But then, we somehow became more of our own individual people. Her leaving me first made me figure out how to be me without her and I think that that made us even closer than we were.
And then, when I went to college, I chose the one she’d chosen, too. I chose the dorm she’d lived in. So many of my choices were made because of hers. And. She wanted me in her letters. She wanted me in her life. The one she’d made there.
She took me out the morning after my first “partied too hearty” night. She told me it was okay when college was hard for me as she carried a 4.0. We each had our own friends. But we also always had each other.
We were each other’s number 1 maid on our wedding days. We were there when our babies arrived. We’ve commiserated about motherhood. We’ve gushed about our babies. We’ve ranted about potty training. And raved about our kids’ accomplishments.
We used to talk every day. But now we are in the same phase of life again — with kids and activities and… and. And we totally understand that when we have to cut a call short. Or play phone tag for days. But we are still each other’s first call after a day. And the one who understands the other in all things.
I’ve never been jealous of all that she is. But instead, admired her and used all that she is for a guidepost.
She is my friend. She is one who gets me completely and loves me as I am. One who believed in me and stood by as I learned how to believe in myself. She is one I look up to. And the one I am so happy to have. She is my sister.
Of all the gifts I’ve received in this life, getting to have a sister is right up at the top of my list.
She was my sister first, but almost immediately, my built-in best friend. And from the very start until the very end and all that is in-between, I know that no matter where we live, what we do, or who we become, we will always have a lifetime of memories and experiences that make us sisters. And friends.