I was able to visit with my sister this evening for awhile. We live across the country from each other and often find even a quick phone call difficult. She is busy with a toddler and I am busy with my kids, and sometimes, it seems as if there are not enough minutes (or hours) to say all that we want to say.
I'm extremely close with my siblings. I have a brother as well. We have strong connections with each other. You know the kind...you beat the crap out of each other when you're little. You yell, you push, you pray for the day when you'll have your own things. And then a strange thing happens. Exactly what you wish for happens. And a little piece of you goes missing.
For me, it's more like a gaping wound. I have a wonderful husband. I have three amazing kids. And they make me mad sometimes. And they make me laugh and love and smile. But being away from my siblings is hard. Time is cruel when you're separated from the ones you shared rooms with. I watch my kids look at each other when I'm ranting about something ridiculous, and miss that camaraderie of having someone have my back when all else failed. Yes, my brother and sister and I fought with each other, but we'd also fight to the death for each other.
It is still that way. My sister is neck-deep in being a new mother. My brother is building his grown life. I power through with the day to day goings-on in my world....and so we go, living our days, creating memories, struggling, celebrating, crying and laughing separately. Every once in a while though, the stars align and we find time to talk. We write letters by snail-mail. We in-box each other on Facebook. We call each other for just a minute and want to talk for days. I find myself protective of them, and they of me. I want to see them. Hold them. Cherish them. Mostly though, I want to laugh with them. We're all funniest when together. We bring up silly memories or act out vignettes of our lives together as kids. My daughter once said on a visit home, "Mom, I've never heard you laugh like that before!" It's true. These precious people know everything good and bad about me.
We have since gained fantastic family members in spouses and children. We have lost some of the few people we trusted with all of our hearts. We've faced illnesses and mourned for relationships we couldn't keep. And we've done it together.
I'm not really sure why I wanted to post this. Maybe because my brother isn't feeling well today. Maybe because someone I love lost his brother recently. Maybe because someone else I love almost lost his. Perhaps it was because for about an hour today I was able to feel like I was in the room with my baby sister, laughing and crying in tandem ; without fear, and completely comfortable during all of it.
So yes, their physical absence sometimes does feel like a gaping wound. But the laughing and joking, the communication and understanding of unconditional love between the three of us makes for a pretty good looking band-aid. I am so blessed.
Have a wonderful Friday, friends.