Sister, you’ve been on my mind…..

16 03 2011

One time, years ago, Kim and I were hanging out together in her apartment in Vancouver. We had had a few drinks and other *ahem* stuff, and were having a wonderful time together, when I looked at her, and asked “How crazy is it that we were little kids together?” and because of the resonant truth and “for-reals” clarity of that off-the-cuff observation, we laughed and laughed.

But seriously, how cool and awesome and crazy and weird and fantastic and humbling? My sister and I have known each other, deeply and honestly for almost 37 years now. I vaguely recall her as a newborn; my memories of her coming home are more of awe and ownership rather than of a physical being.

She was my tag-along. My bright-eyed chubby-cheeked accomplice. My annoyance. My right to boss around. My peon. My admirer. My frustration. My rock. My solace. My supporter. My champion of everything I am.

She was there. All the time. Didn’t matter what. We played dollies and school. I secretly made and snuck cookie dough for us to eat when Mom was out of the house. We dressed up our basset hound like a baby and fed that poor dog pablum, we formed a united front against unjust parental rule. We laughed, we fought. We tromped through it all, thick and thin; two blonde girls with bright blue eyes, both different and alike. I resented her, loved her, admired her, refused her, cherished her, defended her.

We became mothers 16 months apart. She breathed with me through my contractions and bashed her head in excitement against the stirrups to catch the first glimpse of my son as he took his first breath; I leaned into her, sisters beside each other, our hands clasped tight one June morning as her son cried before he was even fully born. Her tears matched my own when my sweet daughter joined our family, as mine did when her daughter made her wonderful appearance, both years apart and both in that delicious month of July.

We know one another’s dark secrets. We hold tight to the past and how it defines us and we embrace the future and its allure of the unknown. We are each other’s best friend. We fight rarely, but when we do, hold on to your hats, kids, because we fight hard. But then we make up just as well, we accept and cajole and laugh and get over it.

We are aging together. We bear witness to each line and groove, as they mark their path across our faces. And if we are lucky and blessed, we will get to be little old ladies together, rejoicing the gift of getting to live for so long. But not before enjoying every ounce of life’s gifts. Yes, we try to practice living in the moment. We celebrate our children and their unique beauty and gifts. We complain to each other about life’s annoyances and phone each other at least once, if not two or three times a day. Recipes, husbands, clothes, gardens, the world, religion, dogs, orgasms, PMS, fishtanks, school, earthquakes, yoga. Tears, giggles, irritable responses, joyous commendations, complete and devoted understanding.

Sometimes, all we need to say to each other is “you know”. And we do. Her and I just know.

She is sometimes what holds me up in life, when I think I just might fall down.

I am blessed beyond words to have her in my life. When my children argue with one another and express hatred for each other and I am at my wit’s end with their bickering, I often ask them “Who is Mom’s best friend?”, in hope of instilling the value of siblings upon them (and, by siblings, I deeply believe regardless of whether they are brother OR sister), they both dutifully and simultaneously answer me “Your sister.”

Damn right. My sister. My best friend.

(100 imaginary points to who can tell me where I get the title to this post from.)

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19 responses

16 03 2011
Ronda

My first thought was my sister and I… if not, that’s fine, but it sure brought me lots of tears of what I am missing in my life.

Thank you sweet Kris… you have to be the best writer out there… you always know the perfect words to say … you say what I can’t… and I thank you for that.

Love you,

16 03 2011
Kris

Love you too, and you and your sister have a unique and deep love too.

16 03 2011
Tanya

Yep, that’s what it’s all about sistah!
Love it, well done. As always. 🙂

16 03 2011
Kris

Thank you!

17 03 2011
Kendall

Again… I am humbly in awe. You are a talent Miss Thing.
What an amazing gift you and your sister have. I could only wish for a moment of what you two have with my sister. The passion, the loyalty, the dedication and the deep unbroken love. You are both amazing women who I look up too and learn from all the time for I am lucky enough to be in your lives!
I love you dear cuz!

17 03 2011
Kris

You’re a sister from another mister, and I love you tons too!!!!

17 03 2011
Kendall

Thanks Kris… I feel the same way (sista from another mista!)

17 03 2011
Kim

Okay, so I read this last night and couldn’t write…tears blurring my vision. You said it all and you said it so well. I’m not sure how many times Bruce hears me say…I love my sister..and I do, so very much. I think many siblings love each other, but they do not necessarily like each other. Aren’t we lucky. Thank you for this beautiful letter. I slept so well after reading this, it somehow made me feel much safer in the world. (Actually, I slept well after listening to our 4 hooligans giggle until waaaay too late!) Thanks again for putting this all out there so clearly so we may all see what we are capable of, how deep our hearts can run for another. May our children have this gift as well!

17 03 2011
Kris

I really hope they do have what we have! Love you!

17 03 2011
Kim

Of course…I know where Sister, you’ve been on my mind is from!!

17 03 2011
Kris

I can sing the whole thing…. 🙂

17 03 2011
Agnes Abbott

Awesome Kris ,, Keep up the good job !!!!!!!!!! I didn’t have any relations with Sisters or brothers for that matter ,,,,,,,,,but I do have it with my Half daughter and Beautiful granddaughter ……

17 03 2011
Agnes Abbott

That was suppose to be “”” HALF CRAZY DAUGHTER “” SORRY LIS !!!!!!couldn’t find a place to correct it !!!

17 03 2011
Kris

I have always admired you and Lisa’s relationship, Agnes! Love you!

17 03 2011
Melissa

That’s from The Color Purple! Beautiful Kris. I’m happy you and Kim have arrived at a place in life where you cherish each other. ❤

17 03 2011
Kris

DING DING!!! Cam, you got the 100 points! LOL. And thank you!

17 03 2011
Kirrily Reilly

I truly love it Kris – you two were so lucky to have each other and of course me! Love reading your thoughts and you are both never far from my thoughts and memories.

17 03 2011
Kirrily Reilly

That was meant to be ‘are’ not ‘were’ sorry. I was thinking of the my extrodinary time in the Laybourne sister bubble which I still feel part of, you are really the only sisters I have in the world. I have a plethora of wonderful friends but no other sisters. However I would dearly love to be closer in proximity to you guys just to sit out on the deck and share some of that wine and laughter. Thank goodness for the internet and cool dreams.

17 03 2011
Kris

I do think of you as my little sister! Love you lots!

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