I love my sister more than anything, but like any relationship, we’ve had our ups and downs. From tattletale rants to our parents as kids, to crying over the phone from colleges 400 miles apart in our 20s, to being each other’s most annoying, most heroic best friend and worst enemy. We're sisters, by every definition of the word.
Getting older is hard enough on your familial relationships as it is. But I believe the sister bond is something else entirely.
My sister and I used to tell strangers we were fraternal twins. We look a lot alike and are only two years apart. In a way, we are twins. We share the same soul. We finish each other’s sentences. We sound alike on the phone. We think alike, and enjoy a lot of the same things.
Sometimes it’s all too much. It’s too much of me complaining about myself when I think I’m complaining about her. And vice versa. When I find myself disappointed in my sister, I sometimes realize I’m disappointed in myself.
As we grow into adulthood, she and I need each other less and less. We needed each other A LOT growing up, and even in our 20s, when we stumbled and fell and got back up again. If there is a God, he made sure we were tumbling at separate times in our lives, so we could pick each other up.
But resentment can grow when the person who may as well be the mirror reflection of you hits a wall. Or does something “wrong.” Or changes without your even realizing it. Or doesn’t tell you something big that happened, because they had someone else to share it with.
I have been lucky enough to live in the same city as my sister for a while now. We’ve both changed a lot over the years. We’ve grown into women who can support ourselves both emotionally and financially; we do the things we both need to do to stay as happy and healthy as possible.
The fact is, that reflection in the mirror has started to change over the years. We look less alike. We think less similarly. We disagree a bit more often. And it’s been an adjustment.
But what I’ve realized is that it’s all okay. It’s part of life. I don’t love my sister any less. In fact, I love her more. I am growing to respect her and frankly find myself in awe of her accomplishing her goals and dreams and doing it all without my help or input. She is doing it on her own. She doesn’t need me.
Maybe the little tinge of pain I feel in all of this is setting her free. She is my baby sister. And my almost-twin. She’ll always have part of my soul. She’ll always be part of my soul, no matter what differences we have in adulthood.