There were never such devoted sisters.
Year after year after year. Side by side, singing and dancing along while White Christmas played in the background – a family tradition. Me, the middle child singing the loudest and clamoring for attention. Rachel, the oldest and as such, always dressed in the choicest dress-up dress. Meredith, the youngest, beaming with the joy of being allowed to join.
Every little thing that we are wearing.
Synchronized dance moves. Perfect smiles. Young women impeccably rehearsed to match each other note for note and step for step. Then the song ends and their story begins. They pester, assume, misinterpret, meddle, manipulate, run away, and finally hug and make up in the end.
It is perhaps my favorite cinematic portrayal of sisterhood.
As a child, it was all about the layers of tulle. In my teens, I began to appreciate the layers to their relationship.
Those who’ve seen us,
Know that not a thing could come between us,
Many men have tried to split us up but no one can.
I watch my two daughters, now approaching the ages of 4 and 6. Their interactions conjure vivid memories of my own tempestuous times growing up with three girls in one house. One second the most capital of playmates, sharing secrets, fighting bad guys and exploring the edges of the universe. The next second, the most dangerous of foes, clashing chaotically, fighting each other and screaming for retribution. Generally speaking, we did usually manage to hug and make up in the end – often with strong guidance from our mother.
Thankfully, for me, as the years took my sisters and me farther apart, the closer our hearts seemed to grow. This month finds us finally officially reunited in Cincinnati, settled for good and all.
And so, on this day, I share a fervent wish for my girls in their journey of sisterhood:
I hope you push each other’s boundaries, but know when to step back. One sister locking herself in a bathroom in tears is usually a red flag.
I hope you learn the power of an apology and the grace of forgiveness.
I hope you read Little Women too many times and fight over who gets to be which sister. I promise you, they all have incredible qualities – even Amy.
I hope you challenge each other, but never compare yourselves to each other.
I hope you quickly learn to embrace forced quality time together. Long walks home from school or years as permanent carpool buddies can forge a formidable bond.
I hope you have shared interests but completely unique strengths and talents, and that you are each other’s biggest cheerleaders.
I hope you tell me everything in your heart, but since you probably won’t, I hope you at least tell your sister.
I hope you provide wise counsel to each other, like when it might be a good time to talk to your Mom.
I hope you always remember that you can hate something your sister does without hating her.
I hope that, no matter what, you never give up on each other. I hope you talk, and fight, and laugh, and cry, and annoy, and celebrate, and ignore, and invite, and always always always hug and make up in the end.