We are family

Frankly the less said about that sleepover the better.

That’s not completely true but I am still smarting so will allow a decent interval to lick my metaphorical wounds.

What’s in my mind right now is how much I like my sister. I mean I really love her – but I like her a lot as well. I’m pretty sure we’d hang out without the blood connection, I think she’s a sistah in all senses of the word.

I’m not an anonymous blogger, it was a conscious choice on my part to be as open as possible, so much else of me is out there, floating around in the public domain. I’ve probably blogged about stuff I wouldn’t necessarily sit down to talk to my family about, I’m not afraid they’ll read it but I also don’t go out of my way to tell them this stuff is here. 

I love that I’ve seen her grow into herself. I don’t think I know a more resourceful woman. We are an unstoppable, flexible, lateral thinking, roll with the punches, improvising, making the best of it, having a great time superteam.

She’s an amazing aunt – bringing the full focus of her attention on to my kids, making them feel special. I already doubt I’m going to be able to live up to this one in return.

No one makes me giggle like her in the night when we’re sharing a bed and supposed to be going to sleep – when we were kids and just the same only yesterday.

That we’re fine to disagree – essentially we’re different – we have quite a different take on faith, organisational skills – different strengths and weaknesses. We can respect those though, and appreciate them. It’s fine to vent, snap and be cross because basically we love each other and it can stand a little anger.

We have a fine family tradition of strong matriarchal leaders. Spiders in the centre of their homely webs tugging on lines and spinning stratagems. We’re pretty immune to any well-meaning or accidental meddling. My first instant thought is that the whisper has been chinese. She didn’t say that, I’ll check with her. We’ve got each others back.

My sister makes the choices she thinks are right. Even when they’re hard or wearisome. She always tries to see the best side. She thinks before she speaks. Most people who know us both think she’s the older sister and always have. She never rubs my face in it.

I think I give her things too. I hope I show her she can let go a bit. I hope I show her how capable she is, what potential she has. When things are sad there’s no one we want more than each other.  I hope I’m an example that most things heal.

When it looked like Z would be an only child my biggest ache was not being able to give him this kind of support network. Someone who remembers your childhood, each scrape and bruise. The triumphs, the misery and boredom – the crazy parents. The bad clothes, the bargains and battles – all the tricks and lies and borrowing. The chair in the garden whose arms were your pretend ponies and the terrible hippie lunch boxes no-one else at school wanted to share. Mung bean sprouts anyone? Not a fair swap for monster munch.


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