There’s only so many things that can run through your head when you get the following 3 notifications in a row:
Samantha sent a photo.
Samantha sent a photo.
Same flannel, same mirror, same blood ??
And I’m pretty sure every single one of them did yesterday when I got them from my little sister. I have to admit, I was hesitant to open Messenger for fear of what those two photos contained. Hipsters?? Wait, I’m pretty sure I’m a hipster now. Why is there blood? What’s happening? Am I being threatened? Or does she want to start a super angsty sister duo girl band*, and this is the name of our first hit single. But she wasn’t suggesting combining our musical talents, or asking me to be over in ten minutes with a shovel. Though I totally would be and she knows it. <3
No, instead she just erased and and all doubt that we both popped out the same Baby-Bake Oven.
I simultaneously wanted to applaud her cleverness and grab her by the shoulders and shake her. STOP GROWING UP! IT’S A TRAP! I’ve always seen a lot of myself in my youngest sister, but here she was, standing where I stood, wearing the same thing I wore standing there almost a decade ago now. For some reason, it really put things into perspective. In the dissociative haze that has been the last 6 years of my life, my not-so-little sister has grown into this amazing, gorgeous, and talented young woman.
Below is something I wrote last April. I couldn’t say it any better then, and I can’t now…
Some days you wake up after 11 hours of lying in bed and instantly hate the day and feel ready to turn in for the night (morning?) already. But outside your door are the whimpers and yowls and whatever the hell sound your cat just made, saying they’re hungry, and need to potty, and are possibly being possessed by the devil. And perhaps it’s because you have to put on pants, but you feel uncontrollably and inexplicably angry… Responsibilities aside, you plop onto the couch with a cookie, the breakfast of champions, and watch a documentary on Charles Manson, because that’s what normal people watch when they’re in a bad mood, right? (Hannibal was still downloading) And your panties are all in a bunch, probably also due to the pants situation, but more likely because you notice it’s snowing outside. You’re basically ready to throw in the towel when you notice your little sister sent you a video.
It’s her, playing a song on the keyboard. You think about your own keyboard, your sewing machine, your drawing pencils, and all your other neglected happy art making things. She then tells you that she’s loved playing keyboard ever since she saw you play one day that’s been far lost in your mind amidst the horrors of recent years. You think to her love of the arts, how she’s always looked up to you- confided in you and idolized you. You feel a tug at your heart. You don’t always feel very strong, certainly not today, and really not most days– surely you’re no one to look up to. And yet she does…
And just like the old days, you know you’ve got to lead by example. Because not only are there three tiny fur babies depending on you, but one very special girl who’s too quickly growing into a young woman. A young woman with hopes and dreams, and her fair share of fears and bad days. Just like you. All at the same time a good friend posts something that makes your day, and a newly found one brings a much needed reality check along on a tidal wave of fun conversation and quite possibly the best blog to be discovered, slowly urging you out of the protective shell you’ve crammed yourself into, pants and all. You open Word and try to find your own to convey the flurry of emotions coursing through your old and rusty veins. But your head feels like the view outside your window– a snow globe, all shook up.
And so you give up on your poetic muse and settle for a long and rambling Facebook status which you know will likely go largely unread, let alone understood. But you hope she’ll see it, along with anyone else who needs to. You hope those who need to, know you love them, appreciate them, and everything they do for this poor, broken girl who too often feels she has nothing to give in return but her undying gratitude and a promise that she will continue to fight. Because she’s a Big Sister, and that’s the most important job in the world… <3
“Yeah, we’re kind of a big deal…”
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*Which needs to happen…