“Do you have a sibling who you just click with? Someone that you have always been comfortable to say anything to and know that deep down, they’ve got your back and will love you no matter what? I’m very blessed because I have 4 of them! It’s because of them that I imagined having 4 kids when I grew up. Then I started having kids and realized how fricken hard it was to be a mom- the sleep deprivation, the lack of personal time and space, and all of the emotions, don’t get me wrong… I ABSOLUTELY love my kids, but two is plenty for me.) Each of my siblings have their faults (who doesn’t- I know I’m not up for the “Perfect Sister Award”- is that a real thing?) but their beautiful qualities outshine them by far. In the next few weeks, I’m going to tell you about how lucky I am to be their sister. “
For a little over 4 years, I was the baby of the family of three girls before my brother Sam was born. When he arrived he took over my old room which was close to my parents and I was moved up to the attic to live with my sister, Sheila. As early as I can remember, I always had a very strong bond with Sheila. She always said she’s wanted kids and you could tell this was true by the way she interacted with me and now my kids. When I was young, I would sometimes wish that I could have been the same age as her so that we could do more things together but honestly, my age never really felt like it hindered my capability to hang out with her and her friends. I remember when we lived in the attic together, we would hang out with her friends together.
On nights when I got really scared I’d crawl into her bed and we’d tickle each other’s backs and talk. After bath or showers, we’d make believe we were princesses and she’d place our towels on our heads to look like princess hats and we’d go down to our creepy basement where there was a little cupboard and we’d pretend to be trapped inside it by an evil henchman. Other days, we’d play video games and to help her concentrate, I’d play with her hair. In the fall, we made a house out of leaves in our yard and in the winter we made one of snow and ice. My fear of hornets came from a day in the park when my sister wasn’t wearing shoes (I think) and she stepped on one and I remember how awful her pain was and to this day I run away like a scared child when I come across a hornet, which my husband thinks is ridiculous and hilarious.
I couldn’t imagine not being in the same house as my sister Sheila. When I was six, everything changed. My parents got divorced and I no longer lived with my sisters. I saw them occasionally and it tore me up when we had to go to our own house at the end of our visits. Then, when I didn’t think it could get worse, we moved to Fargo (about 5 hours away) so my mom could go back to school. When we moved back home a year later, my sister had moved 8 hours away to live with my dad. I had 6 years of solid time with my sister and then when I was 8 I only saw her on holiday’s and a few random weekends. When she got old enough to drive, she drove her little car down to see us for the weekend once or twice and made a point to call us to keep in touch.
After she graduated high school and moved to Kansas, she made it a point to meet us and we got to stay with her for a few months in the summer. I remember when she was living in Kansas, I’d stay in her queen bed with her and we’d talk about deep stuff like religion, relationships, and life. It’s because of her that I have such an open-mind because the small town I grew up in was a typical small town- kind of set in their beliefs.
We have lived in the same city again for the last 6 or 7 years, yet because of our busy lives we barely see each other. Regardless, I know she always got my back whenever I have something come up with the kids or if I need someone to talk to. I know deep down, she loves me no matter what and I feel the same about her. We have a lot in common when it comes to lifestyle choices and I miss our closeness. I know that once our lives aren’t so hectic we will be able to be us. My sister is so generous, beautiful, smart, loyal, and loving. I always hope that she knows that I love and appreciate her always.
My favorite memories of Sheila:
1. Playing Dr. Mario together, even though she always kicked my ass
2. The time she almost broke our grandparents stool and grandma didn’t notice a thing
3. Driving to the West coast for one of the many amazing road trips we’ve had
4. 4th of July when I was in college
5. Sharing a brownie before the Vagina monologues
6. Her teaching me how to count to 10 in Spanish and German
7. Watching her passionate career evolve and skyrocket