Wednesday, January 20, 2010


december 330 I always wanted a sister.  I still wish I had one.  One that was really mine – not just obligated by marriage or some sort of Uber-Friend.  I dreamt of a sister on whom I could stake my claim, in whom I could expect undying loyalty.  A bond of blood, chromosomes, life and heart.  A history filled with pinky-promises, tearful fights, side-splitting laughter, and whispers in the dark.

I love watching my girlies cuddle like kittens – in front of the TV, eating snacks, beneath quilts and sheets, even at the kitchen table.  Everyday their closeness – or, rather, their absence of personal space and boundaries – amazes me.  It is not the same with brothers.january 243

Yet, I am surprised at how rough and tumble they can be.  More and more, lately, I find them man-handling each other – wrestling around like hyper little puppies in a pen, knowing full well that Mama will snatch them up by the scruff of their neck any  second.  I’ll walk through the den and find them behind the couch, halfway beneath an end table – one sister pinned flat on her back as the other straddles her chest.  Their giggles escalating uncontrollably like wild fires.

january 288BabyGirl was less than a year old when we moved them into the same bedroom.  At a routine well check-up, I hashed out  some baby sleep questions with the pediatrician.  At the time, he asked me if I wanted BabyGirl to be more reliant on me or her sister.  Did I want her to learn to be comforted by BigGirl in the night, or me?  I knew then that, while I did not wish to place a burden on BigGirl, I wanted them to share a close bond that would comfort them both throughout their nights – and days – forever.january 220

A long time ago, My Daddy told my brothers and me that we were the closest thing in the world to each other.  He spoke these words in a fit of frustration and heartbreak; we fought like cats and dogs.  I’ve never forgotten that lecture.  In fact, I’ve preached my own version of it a few times to my girlies.

On the last occasion I tried to impart that pearl of wisdom to my girls, I watched BigGirl’s eyes tearfully soak up my message.  I explained to her that, one day, a long time away from today, Mommy and Daddy would be gone.  We would be in heaven.  But, they wouldn’t be alone because they would have each other.  That is the best, most important gift Mommy and Daddy has ever given them – each other.  They will be best friends, worst enemies, soul mates, teacher and student, companions, playmates, competition, and – one day – parents to each other.  Over time, they will be everything to each other.

january 282To each other, they will scream obscenities, hurl prized possessions, confide deepest secrets, and confess dreams and fears.  Between them, they will protect each others’ stories.  They will know each other better than FireDaddy and I will ever know either of them.  A bittersweet thought.

I love my girlies.  I love BigGirl and I love BabyGirl.  I love them more than I know how to describe.  But, what I love even more than either of them is their sisterhood.  My love for them as a pair is exponentially larger and grander and more amazingly overwhelming than my love for either of them independently. december 339

When I was pregnant with BabyGirl, I feared that this wonderful new addition would jeopardize my relationship with BigGirl.  I worried that I could not possibly love another baby as much as I so obviously loved her.  I worried about jealousy, sibling rivalry, perceived favoritism, and all sorts of potential threats.  I sought the council of friends, my mother, and every mother of multiple children I knew.

One mother, I don’t remember who, finally spoke the words that settled the worry in my heart.  “Don’t think of it as taking something away from her…you are giving her a gift no one else can, a gift like no other.  You are giving her the best gift of all – a sister.”


  1. Love this! Beautifully written and touching. Lovely.

  2. That one brought a tear to my eye.

  3. I have three sisters. I am not close with two of them, but the third is my best friend, closest confidante, and brain twin. We are four years apart but so similar that I know when she's gone, it'll be like a missing limb. I didn't know it growing up, but she is definitely the best gift my parents ever gave me.

    Your post makes me want to give her a big hug when she comes over in a bit just to hang out (cause that's what we do).

  4. I know better than anyone how much you wanted a sister. It's apparent when you consider how many times I wore makeup as a child.

  5. Gosh, you have me in tears. I tell the same thing to my boys and my daughter. Granted, I'm sure the boys will always be closer, but they won't ever be alone (hopefully). Sigh, you just wrote it beautifully. Oh yea, and while I never wanted a sister, I used to want a big brother to watch over me and beat up guys that gave me a problem for me. ;)

  6. So sweet and so special! Made me teary!!

  7. Made me teary too! I have a sister and two little daughters so it all rang very true. I tell my girls that one day when one of them has a baby, the other one might come over and bath it in the kitchen sink just like my sister did.

    Thanks for a beautiful post.

    Heather in Brisbane via Irregular Tammie's blog


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