Tomorrow is my older sister's birthday. She'll be 26. It's hard to imagine the both of us getting older and more mature. In my mind, she's still 16 and going out with friends, and I'm still 13 and kicking and screaming to get to go with her. When we were younger, Kathy and I fought. A lot. We were only three years apart, so whatever she got to do, I felt I should also be allowed to do. I was the embodiment of every annoying little sister that has ever been portrayed in books or movies. Anywhere she was, I had to be. Anything she did, I had to do.
This may be the reason that once she turned 18, she essentially disappeared from my life. When I woke up in the morning to go to school, she was in bed. When I got ready to go to bed at night, she was still out with friends. I never really got to see her and do anything with her for a long time after that. She soon moved out of my parent's house. I was probably a sophomore in high school when this happened. I was 15 or 16 at that point, so anything that didn't revolve around me was of no concern to me. I would see her every once in a while, but it didn't really bother me that we weren't in contact on a regular basis.
Once I started college, I began to regret the fact that I did not have a close relationship with my sister. I began to semi-regularly contact Kathy through email whenever I had time to talk and something to say. I still did not have these forever long conversations in which I asked for advice on boys, dating or makeup. Looking back now, I wish I had. The conversations could have been about anything. Something.
There are times when I feel like I missed the transformation that my sister went through. She changed from being an unambitious person who just wanted to skate through life (sorry, Kathy) to someone who has focus and drive. She has learned the value of hard work and has grown up into a person that I wish I knew better. Within the last three years, she met, fell in love with, and married a really funny guy (albeit a funny man of few words). By marrying Jimmy, she also became the step-mother of his son, Gavin. Oh. My. God. My sister, the girl that I shared a room with for so long and would play games with when we couldn't fall asleep (one of the games that I can actually recall included Kathy laying on my legs or vice versa and us pretending that we were laying on logs and that they could talk to us. And this was before either one of us was ever on any kind of drug), is married and has a child. And a job. And all kind of responsibilities that come along with these things. She owns a house. And a car. And cooks. And cleans.
While I regret that I missed this transformation, I'm so thankful for it. I'm thankful for the person that my sister has become (not that I didn't deeply and truly love the person that she was). I am so proud of Kathy. And while I know that I never really showed her, or told her for that matter, I have always loved and respected her. I will always be thankful that I was allowed to be considered a sister and friend to such a remarkable woman.
Happy Birthday, Kathy. I love you.
Your annoying (but hopefully not so much anymore) little sister