But what struck me was much more than her presence and her plethra of tips. I realized, finally, just how much work this big sister role has taken over the last 22 years. You see, my super-smart sister, through the Lord's perfect will, moved to Auburn, AL when I was eight years old. Yes, you did the math correctly. We are ten years a part in age. [Oops, sorry Moll, I think I just gave your age away.] I should have known then that Louisiana would never get my go-getter of a sister back. And then she sealed the deal with marrying an Alabama lawyer.
What I realized is that things could be so different. She could have come home less and been much more annoyed with me during ages 8 though 16. But she's never missed a holiday and was excited for me when I started shaving my legs. Now, since I've left home, I see that these long distant relationships take work, and I see just how much work she's put into it over the last 14 years. And I see that she was the one making the effort, since I was a clueless adolescent. It's true that whatever Molly does she does incredibly well. How thankful I am that it has always been the same for this big sister job.
And this has got to be my favorite sister stage yet since I've joined the married club. We have more fun sharing hotel rooms and road-tripping in their sweet new ride. I love our closet switches and being her fashion go-to girl. I'm so thankful that she gave me the brother I always wanted and made me the aunt I always wanted to be. I love that we still look at the American Girl catalogue together [RIP Samantha and Felicity]. I'm proud when people say I sounded just like her when I said something and that we look alike [even though that's totally not true]. And I love laughing at the same family jokes over and over again and that she always knows exactly what I'm talking about. I know I owe that to all those years of her relationship-building work.
I'll keep begging God that, if it's His perfect plan, we'll live next door to one another one day. Or at least close enough to have a lunch date and to be each other's kids' emergency contact person. And I'll go ahead and cement my control-freak feet to the floor in order to keep myself from making that happen by my own design.
So happy birthday, beautiful sister.
You the best.