A personal initiative to live more appreciatively

Friday, July 20, 2012

#204: Liz

If you’re a girl, I think there’s no bigger blessing in life than to have a sister.

Don’t get me wrong, I also love everything there is about having a brother. I cherish and value my relationships with each of my three brothers. But if you’re a girl and you only have brothers, I think you’re deprived. A relationship between sisters is something really special, and I am thankful, everyday, for my relationship with Liz.

Liz is 7 years older than me. Growing up with a “big” sister was pretty awesome. When I was really little and had nightmares, I ended up in her bed as much as, if not more than, my parents’. She was young enough to understood what an adolescent wanted and needed in life, but old enough to provide it. I always had someone to take me to concerts, to the mall, to do my hair for dances. I always had someone to turn to for advice, for a good laugh, to keep a secret. She shared with me her closet and her phone line--- two necessary resources when you’re a teenager.

I am thankful for all of this that Liz shared with or gave me throughout my life, but this is all just the tangible stuff. When you grow up with a sister, you get so much from the relationship that is intangible and invaluable. I had someone with whom to share my fears—someone who gave me the courage to overcome them. She played roles beyond just being a sister: she was a second mother at times, a cheerleader, a coach, a counselor, a best friend. Having Liz in my life means I’ll always have her for companionship, always have her to affirm my life decisions and feelings-- and I’m thankful we have such a wonderful relationship, that we’ll continue to do so for the rest of our lives. 

You always look up to your older siblings, and there is so much to look up to about Liz. She is generous and giving, fiercely loyal, kind, devoted to her family and friends. She is intelligent and hardworking, with a bright career as a successful teacher. The definition of beauty, Liz was graced with my mother’s striking features, but has true inner beauty as well. She can captivate a room with her ability to tell a story—what she inherited from my father—but is also one of the best listeners I know. I admire all of this about my sister, and I’ve esteemed to live up to her example.

Before I came along, Liz had three older brothers. So when she learned my mother was pregnant, she prayed regularly, hoping to have a sister and not another brother. She told this story during her maid of honor toast at my wedding, and it’s one I’ve heard from her throughout my life. Liz was so thankful at my birth to have a little sister. Today is Liz’s birthday. I celebrate her today, but truly I celebrate her everyday, and am so thankful to have not just a sister, but her as my sister.  

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